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What is Trade Secret

What is Trade Secret?

A trade secret is defined as a piece of information that is kept confidential or reasonably Which provides a business with an economic benefit over its competitors. 

It is also a type of intellectual property that operates as a technique for protecting its owner rights. Trade secret information never reveal to the public. Owner have full right to make it secrecy. 


  • Financial data
  • Customers lists
  • Computer source code
  • Supplier’s list
  • Pricing information 


The main reason why trade secrets matter is because they protect the source of knowledge of a business.

For example, you are running local restaurant which provides fast food. People come to your restaurant because of unique food cooking recipe. You don’t reveal its recipe to anyone because of your local competitor it copying and they serve same thing and take away your regular customers.


Coca-Cola recipes

Coca-Cola or Coke is a carbonated soft drink that was manufactured by the Coca-Cola company. It was introduced in 1886 by Dr John S. Pemberton in the United States. 

When the product was invented, the company chose to brand the recipe as a trade secret and not patenting it. 

The formula of Coca Cola was concealed for years to gain the company’s benefits in the marketplace. Coca-cola’s trade secret is one of the famous protected brands that still holds its advantages for a long time.

Kentucky Fried Chicken’s secret on herbs and spices

Kentucky Fried Chicken is an American fast-food restaurant that was founded by Colonel Harland Sanders in the city of Kentucky.

 The entrepreneur started with selling fried chicken from his roadside and after seeing the potential of it, he opted for a trade secret which he kept the recipes in his head without disclosing it to anyone. 

After some time, he eventually wrote down the recipes and kept the original hand copy at a safer place in Kentucky. Due to trade secrets, KFC is still making profits in the market industry until now.

Macdonald’s special sauce recipe

Macdonald got its competitive edge in business when it made its recipe a trade secret and later it was nowhere to be found in the 1980s during reformulation. Luckily enough, Mac Donald’s was now able to recover the recipes from its owner since it was still in its legal documents.

Krispy Kreme Doughnuts

Krispy Kreme is known as an American doughnut company and coffeehouse chain owned by JAB holding company founded by Vernon Rudolph in 1937 in Winston.


Its recipe has been a trade secret for 70 years. The process that makes the doughnuts fresh and warm with so many varieties amazes everyone and only a few employees have access to the recipes through the confidential agreement that was kept safe at the headquarters of the company.

Google Algorithms

Google algorithm enables google search engine to find, rank and get back to important web pages for a particular search question. Its system uses multiple algorithms that  depend on  factors like usability, aspects and applicability of the page.

Being the best search engine until today, it has been a good track for a lot of people in maintaining their businesses and reshaping the world’s technology.

It was made a trade secret in such a way that nobody knows the exact algorithm of the google search engine other than its founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin.


Just to be brief on the validity of trade secrets, we can conclude that a trade secret can stay indefinitely as long as the secret is kept safe and not revealed to the public. 

It doesn’t include any registration costs except that of the large amount which is paid to make the information a secret to protect it from being used by others.


Trade secret is totally depending on the owner and how much possible steps are taken to make information secrecy. Trusting someone that can reveal the information can be broke trade secret. 

At Wissen Research, we help individuals and companies to stabilize the identity and protection of a brand with all the legal steps involved. If you are thinking of how to make your unique invention/information a trade secret, then do not hesitate to reach out.