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Is a NDA Enough? My Closely Guarded Secret..

Discussion in 'BlackHat Lounge' started by agag2, Feb 1, 2013.

  1. agag2

    agag2 Supreme Member

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    Hello

    I'm about to sign a contract with someone on Freelancer to produce a certain software. I've done extensive research on this software and I'm about to disclose all of this to the developer. I will make him sign an NDA but I'm curious (and worried) how much power does an NDA really have? What if he walks off with my idea?

    Also should I request all of his personal info in the NDA (home address, phone number, etc) this might help that he won't just walk off with the idea (theoretically, he could use false info though - no?)

    Thanks
     
  2. secretmethods

    secretmethods Newbie

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    NDA means nothing... not unless you become a fb or something "worth" something...

    When building you need to work with a close team that you trust... nobody is perfect & i've been doing this for years... & be happy to refer you to some trustworthy people...

    Be careful but NDA to me means nothing.
     
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  3. jazzc

    jazzc Moderator Staff Member Moderator Jr. VIP

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    NDA is a joke, it offers no protection in practice.

    Suppose your idea is indeed a huge cash cow. Suppose he sees that. Suppose he signed an NDA and wants to avoid any action from you. Suppose he creates a company in a different jurisdiction under a nominee (or a friend of his) and does all payments through that structure.

    Suppose you want to go after that through the legal system. Good luck and hopefully you have a lot of money to burn in the process... would you go into the trouble?

    If your idea is complex, split it into different tasks and give it to different people. This way no one knows the greater picture.
     
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  4. BrianKade001

    BrianKade001 BANNED BANNED

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    Sorry to burst your bubble, but NDA is total crap because it's just a tool to give you false sense of security. Frankly speaking, even if you land in court for the same, given the criminal justice system across the world, you'd be burnt to hell. So, as jazzc mentioned, you can disintegrate the responsibilities among a wide range of people. In this manner, no one can realize what's your actual plan is or it becomes really difficult to make guess works. My personal experience says that there are people who don't even oblige an NDA. They simply leave the deal and you're left at crossroads.
     
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  5. CoyoteAssassin

    CoyoteAssassin Elite Member

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    NDA's do make a difference... but only if the terms are right.

    I'm in the US and needed an app built. No way would I outsource this to someone in another country where I could not prosecute them. Even though it would have been cheaper.

    The hard part will be proving that they stole your idea.

    You should consider having them call you so that you have their number and can confirm that it matches their location. You may also consider going to an established programmer firm that has something to lose if they do wrong.
     
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  6. p0532673

    p0532673 Registered Member

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    It is only remotely helpful if the Freelancer lives in the same country as you, and wide enough to incorporate the freelancer and his associates. It all depends on the laws of your country, and to a greater extent how much money you have. Otherwise segregation of duties is the better option..like jazzc stated. If the freelancer is hired through a proper platform (odesk, etc.) I'm pretty sure the info will be valid, don't quote me on this though.
     
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  7. JCena

    JCena Junior Member

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    Like others said above - talk over phone first and its always better if he's from the same country as yours.

    I wouldn't trust the feedback on freelancer sites. It does help in making decisions but dont fully rely on it.
     
  8. audioguy

    audioguy Power Member

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    I don't live in USA and here NDA is rare so I really don't have any suggestion regarding this matter.

    But if I may, I suggest you to focus on finding the right team and marketing.

    Think of it this way. There are dozens of SEO sofware (just an example), but most of them s*ck. Some of the authors can't run a business. Others don't market well. Yet others fail to manage finance and end up bankrupt.

    I mean, NDA sounds great... but an idea is just an idea. Ideas are cheap. But implementation, let alone rapid implementation, is golden.
     
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  9. GreenGoblin

    GreenGoblin BANNED BANNED

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    I wish people stop giving false information this is coming from someone who lives with a attorney, a NDA upholds in the court of law along with a international non compete agreement. Now will you spend a pretty penny on a attorney to execute a international case against someone (Yes you will) but that goes down to the law firm that's representing you if u have some joe smo from up the street yes it will be hard to sue someone ass.

    However this is what real law firms are for they have offices all over the world. china, russia, uk etc. If you have a real law firm as your legal counsel it doesn't matter where there ass is they will be sued.
     
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    Last edited: Feb 1, 2013
  10. Techxan

    Techxan Elite Member

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    The main thing an NDA does is show that you took proactive steps to protect your idea from theft. If all the parties of an NDA are in the same jurisdiction, or a jurisdiction that has reciprocal laws with your country, the NDA is enforceable. Do not believe for a minute that they are not. It may not be worth your time and expense, but it is a enforceable contract.

    It is a common tool of business, and in the eyes of the law, a civil offence to break one, leaving you responsible for the losses/damages you caused by breaking it.

    You need documentation to back up the NDA, source material and so on, and you do have to sue to enforce the NDA. But once all the legal hurdles have been achieved, you can win your lawsuit.

    The problem is no one will sign them. I have a idea worth $20,000 a month (+) that I cannot pull off on my own, it will take a team to do it and a few months to get the entity built and ready for customers.

    Everybody I have discussed it with wants to know all the details, but they will not sign a non disclosure agreement when I ask them to.
     
  11. jazzc

    jazzc Moderator Staff Member Moderator Jr. VIP

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    Prove your idea on a smaller scale and you 'll see how things change ;)
     
  12. agag2

    agag2 Supreme Member

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    It seems like most members here are suggesting to split the job into different tasks. However, I fail to understand how to do that effectively. The job is a $5,000 - $10,000 job and all parts are closley linked to one another. One part needs feedback from the other and vice versa.

    There are indeed many parts to the system but I don't see how I can explain only some parts without divulging the others. This would be really difficult I presume..


    Has anyone gone down that path? How?

    Also, the freelancers are from India I believe.

    Thanks
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2013
  13. jazzc

    jazzc Moderator Staff Member Moderator Jr. VIP

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    Difficult or not, if you want to best protect your idea, you have to do it. Write a f*cking book of detailed description per part if you have to.
     
  14. formosa

    formosa Regular Member

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    get NDA ... something is better than nothing ;)
     
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  15. jazzc

    jazzc Moderator Staff Member Moderator Jr. VIP

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    That 's true. As long as you understand its practical limitations.
     
  16. GreenGoblin

    GreenGoblin BANNED BANNED

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    first off if the software is unique then u need a patent first, more then likely a international patent
     
  17. Starcodes

    Starcodes Regular Member

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    do what's called a Compartmentalization Technique it's where you have one programmer do half of the project and another finished up while not letting both of them get the full picture of the project government agencies use this technique all the time
     
  18. Techxan

    Techxan Elite Member

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    Unfortunately, scaling down isn't practical for the venture to succeed.

     
  19. agag2

    agag2 Supreme Member

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    Its not just difficult.. Suppose I get 2 parties to make 1/2 software each how would I bridge the two software together ? They must work in unison ..
     
  20. jazzc

    jazzc Moderator Staff Member Moderator Jr. VIP

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    With the time honored UNIX way: data in, data out.

    Part B listens for incoming data to work with, Part A does its own job and sends data to part B etc.