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Congressman George Holding

Representing the 13th District of North Carolina

Congressman Holding Introduces Bipartisan Trade Secrets Protection Act of 2014

Jul 29, 2014
Press Release
Contact: Alex Miehls, 202-226-8159
Congressman Holding Introduces Bipartisan Trade Secrets Protection Act of 2014
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman George Holding (NC-13), along with a bipartisan coalition of five members, introduced the Trade Secrets Protection Act of 2014, H.R. 5233, which will help provide American businesses and job creators the tools needed to protect valuable property, trade secrets.  Congressman Holding released the following statement:
“American businesses face relentless cyber security threats every day, costing our economy billions of dollars and tens of thousands of jobs each year.  As a way to help create jobs, grow our economy and protect our businesses, I have introduced the Trade Secrets Protection Act of 2014.  This bill will help supply American businesses, both large and small, with the tools needed to combat these destructive threats.
“As I have said before, American businesses are global leaders in innovation and job creation, yet they are faced with increasing threats to valuable information.  The current patchwork within state and federal statutes is not enough to keep pace with organized trade secret theft, resulting in a loss of nearly $100 billion which could mean 200,000 jobs, a recent report stated.
“By helping American businesses defend against these threats, we are not only protecting American interests, but helping recover the millions of dollars and thousands of jobs lost each year.”
The Trade Secrets Protection Act of 2014 follows a House Judiciary Committee hearing in which there was wide bipartisan support for a federal civil remedy for trade secret misappropriation legislation.  The TSPA is part of a bipartisan, bicameral legislative effort to amend the Economic Espionage Act of 1996.  The bill will help create a federal civil remedy for trade secret misappropriation within the Act’s definition of misappropriation, modeled after the Uniform Trade Secret Act. The Act does not preempt state law.
H.R. 5233 was introduced by Congressman George Holding on July 29, 2014.  Representative Steve Chabot (R-OH), Representative Howard Coble (R-NC), Representative John Conyers (D-MI), Representative Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), and Representative Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), have all joined as original cosponsors.
Please see below for statements from original cosponsors:
Ranking Member Rep. John Conyers (D-MI): "Trade secrets are fundamental to the success of any business.  U.S. companies have struggled to protect trade secrets due to innovative technology, which could ultimately harm the American economy.  To combat further economic damage of trade secret theft, my colleagues and I worked together to draft bipartisan legislation that will create a civil cause of action and allow companies to enforce their rights in federal court," said Ranking Member John Conyers Jr.
Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH): “Trade secrets are extremely valuable and important to many American businesses, and, because they derive their value through their secrecy, trade secrets need strong protections to prevent their theft and disclosure,” said Chabot.  “Unfortunately, current law consists of a patchwork of federal and state provisions that are too often inadequate to prevent misappropriation of trade secrets, particularly in our ever-evolving digital world.  Our legislation will give American companies new tools to protect their trade secrets as well as seek damages when misappropriation occurs.”
Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY): “American companies lose billions of dollars a year due to trade theft.  The FBI has worked diligently to address the threat presented to our economy, but additional tools are needed. The option of a federal civil cause of action is another arrow in the quiver to strike at the heart of trade secret theft. I am pleased to join with my Judiciary Committee colleagues today in co-sponsoring the Trade Secrets Protection Act of 2014.”
Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY): “The value of trade secrets to U.S. companies is matched only by their tremendous vulnerability to theft. Innovative technologies have made it easy to obtain information and transfer it across the globe with the click of a cell phone, tablet, or computer key. At the same time, U.S. companies are increasingly targeted for trade secret theft by competitors, with some foreign governments actively encouraging and facilitating the theft of U.S. trade secrets,” said Rep. Jerrold Nadler (NY-10), the Ranking Member of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property and the Internet. “In light of their value and vulnerability, it is essential that Congress provide robust protection for trade secrets and pass our bill.”