Approach to implementation 

Trade secrets were previously protected in the Marketing Act and in other laws, but as a consequence of the Trade Secrets Directive (TSD), the rules have largely been compiled into one law, the Trade Secrets Act. The Act represents a 'close to the text' implementation of the TSD and it does not contain rules that go further than the TSD.

Stage of legislative process 

The implementing legislation is the Trade Secrets Act (Law no. 309 of 25 April 2018). The Act was adopted on 25 April 2018.

Timescale for implementation 

The law entered into force on 9 June 2018, i.e. in compliance with the TSD.

Noteworthy points arising from the legislative changes 
  • The Trade Secrets Act contains legal definitions of the terms 'trade secret', 'trade secret holder', 'infringer' and 'infringing goods'. Those terms were not previously legally defined.
  • Following the TSD, acquisition of trade secrets through independent discovery and reverse engineering is legal. This has been included in the Trade Secrets Act but was not previously explicitly stated in Danish law.
  • The Act does not contain all rules on trade secrets. The Danish Criminal Code also contains certain rules on the illegal acquisition of trade secrets. The Danish Government has chosen not to change this state of affairs, which means that the question of employees and persons otherwise connected to an organization stealing trade secrets will be governed by the new Act, whereas the question of people that are not connected to an organization stealing trade secrets will be governed by the Criminal Code.
  • The implementation of the TSD into Danish law does not constitute substantial or material changes to the current Danish rules on the question of illegal acquisition of trade secrets.