Federal Agency Considers Rule Changes That Could Alter the Meaning of Vehicle Ownership

The proliferation of data-driven devices has fueled a high-stakes debate over whether automotive and agricultural manufacturing companies that create and license software should retain ownership and control of source code after consumers take possession of the products.  Read More

Foreign Companies Considering a U.S. Presence Need a Good Game Plan

With the SAE World Congress in Detroit this week, automotive executives from all over the world are getting a taste (some for the first time) of what the United States, and specifically Michigan and Detroit, have to offer. Many foreign-owned automotive companies already have a presence in the U.S. and new companies are setting up shop here on a nearly daily basis. If you work at a company that is considering a U.S. presence, it’s important to know there are multiple ways to accomplish this. Establishing a presence in the U.S. is not a one-size-fits-all proposition.  Read More

Steer Clear of Antitrust Laws When Protecting Intellectual Property

Automotive suppliers pay a significant amount of attention to protecting their intellectual property when reviewing and negotiating terms and conditions, and rightfully so. As part of that review, suppliers should also pay attention to the intersection between intellectual property rights and antitrust laws. The federal government grants a patent holder the right to a monopoly in the patented technology, but there are limits to that monopoly.  Read More

SEC Enforcement Action on Confidentiality Agreement is Cause for Concern

Do confidentiality agreements create a liability for your company? A recent Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) enforcement action suggests the answer to that question is “yes.”

On April 1, 2015, the SEC announced that it had entered into a settlement with a Houston-based global technology and engineering firm, KBR Inc. At issue was the confidentiality agreements KBR required its employees to sign in connection with an internal investigation.Do confidentiality agreements create a liability for your company? A recent Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) enforcement action suggests the answer to that question is “yes.” Read More

Privacy and the Internet of Things: Building Consumer Trust is Key to Marketing ‘Connected’ Vehicles

One of the hottest topics in technology these days is the so-called Internet of Things, or IoT. The concept is fairly simple: with the increasing accessibility of broadband Internet, the cost of connecting is decreasing, making it possible for our devices (or components of our devices) to connect to the Internet. Information collected from these devices can help improve the devices themselves and maybe improve how we work and live. Goldman Sachs calls it the next technology megatrend and predicts that, in the not-so-distant future, the Internet could be connected to as many as 28 billion “things” – cars, homes, cities, clothes, etc. By 2020, cars with built-in connectivity are expected to make up 90 percent of the market. Read More
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