Italian law considers trade secrets from different perspectives. Trade secrets, i.e. information meeting the requirements set by Art. 98 - 99 of the Intellectual Property Code, are proper Intellectual Property rights and, as such, benefit from the relevant judiciary relief. Additionally, trade secrets may be protected through unfair competition (Art. 2598 of the Civil Code) (which protect trade secrets and non-secret know how). Moreover, the employees' duty of loyalty and confidentiality must be considered (Art. 2105 of the Civil Code). Finally, the criminal relief set forth by Art. 621 - 623 of the Criminal Code and contractual provisions agreed between the parties may be relevant. In the light of the above, the Italian system has traditionally been considered quite advanced in this regard. Therefore, the Italian legislator decided to implement the Trade Secrets Directive (TSD) only partially, by amending some articles of the Intellectual Property Code and of the Criminal Code.
On May 11, 2018 the President of the Italian Republic approved the law implementing the TSD issued by the Italian Government. The law – named Legislative Decree n. 63 of May 11, 2018 – was published in the Italian Official Journal on June 7, 2018.
The new rules set by the Legislative Decree n. 63 of May 11, 2018 came into effect on June 22, 2018 (i.e. 15 days after the publication of the law on the Italian Official Journal).