What Is a Confidentiality Agreement?
Confidentiality agreements, also known as non-disclosure agreements, are documents that protect confidential information. When sharing information with your employees, clients, or vendors, you will need a confidentiality agreement to avoid disclosing valuable information to the public. This is commonly used to protect your company's information and your company's products.
How to Write a Contractor Confidentiality Agreement
Numerous issues have arisen from the improper use and protection of data, and these issues have great impact on your business' growth and your customers' decisions (Smith, Milberg, & Burke, 1996). In addition, a study from inform.nu Solove (2004) states that this dilemma is highly caused by the people's lack of control and knowledge to use the data provided, as well as their lack of participation in the process. Which is why agreements are made to protect confidential information. Keeping information confidential from the public is a way of limiting access to information.
1. Identify the Parties for the Agreement
Identify the parties involved and excluded on the confidentiality agreement. Anyone who has access to confidential information is obliged to be part of the confidential agreement. Then you decide whether your confidential relationship to be established will be mutual or one way.
2. Define the Information to Be Kept Confidential
Proceed to define the information you plan to keep confidential. Describe the scope of confidentiality along with the purpose of doing it. These types of information can include any sort of information exchanged in an agreement between two parties that are meant to be kept away from the public. This will set boundaries of confidential information without exposing the information itself.
3. Establish the Duties and Responsibilities
Establishing your duties and responsibilities is a precautionary measure to limit exploitation and usages of the information provided to anyone involved in the business agreement. This will be a set of instructions for both you and the other party to consider while the agreement is still valid. Breaching any of the duties and responsibilities will lead to penalties.
4. Specify the Period of Validity of the Agreement
Your confidential agreement should specify a period of validity. This occurs during the disclosure of information and is made until the period in which the information should be kept confidential. Depending on which country you belong to, your period of validity would reach around 2 to 3 years or so. If you prefer to set the confidentiality period during the moment the signature is made, be sure not to disclose any information until any signature is written on the basic agreement.
5. Set Penalties for Breach of Agreement
Of course, penalties should be made in case the confidentiality agreement is breached by anyone involved in it. Some examples may include suing your violators or paying fines. The details on the level of penalties shall depend on how light or heavy the offense was made. You may add other necessary miscellaneous provisions such as clauses and the likes.
6. Provide a Space for Signature
At the very end of the legal confidentiality agreement, provide a space for you and the other party to sign. This shall serve as a complete understanding of the entire agreement and the implementation of the duties and responsibilities of both parties. Once both signatures are present on the paper, the agreement shall be considered valid.