Maintain Confidentiality, Protect Proprietary Information and Intellectual Property


Information is among our most important assets. We all have the responsibility to protect the confidentiality of Westinghouse Company information.

  • Accounting and financial information
  • Business and strategic development plans
  • Customer and supplier information
  • Information about upcoming mergers and acquisitions
  • Personal data

Proprietary Information

Proprietary information includes technical and commercial information, including but not limited to technological knowledge, data, documents, designs, trade secrets, accounting and financial information, business and strategic development plans, customer and supplier information, and information about upcoming mergers and acquisitions, or any other items that are the property of Westinghouse. Proprietary information and artifacts (such as documents, computer files, and drawings) may or may not be treated as secret and confidential (e.g., may be Westinghouse Proprietary Class 1, Westinghouse Proprietary Class 2, or Westinghouse Non-Proprietary Class 3), but they need to be protected in order to preserve our competitive advantage and operational security.

Intellectual Property

Intellectual property is any know-how, knowledge, or knowledge artifact that promotes the competitiveness of Westinghouse. Intellectual Property includes Proprietary Information as defined above, and also includes information that although available to the public, is protected by law or statute, such as patents trademarks and copyrights.

How to protect confidential business information:

  • Emails containing confidential business information must be handled in accordance with applicable policies.
  • A paperless approach should be adopted wherever possible – only print confidential business information when you need to, and do not leave in plain view or at printers.
  • Minimize confidential data stored locally on your laptop, password protect it, and always lock your screen when you are away.
  • Confidential information should be locked away if required to be retained, shredded or disposed of in a secured shredding bin.
  • Documents and laptops with confidential information should only be taken off premises when necessary to fulfill your job duties and secured at all times.

When traveling outside your home country, contact the Westinghouse Enterprise Service Desk or Global Trade Compliance about any laptop restrictions or if you need a loaner laptop.

I am working on a utility customer project in Taiwan and would like to include supplier information that is marked with the supplier’s proprietary notice as a deliverable to the customer. May I include the supplier proprietary information in my utility customer deliverable?

It depends on the language of the agreement under which Westinghouse obtained the supplier proprietary information. You should consult with your Global Supply Chain Solutions representative to see if you are contractually permitted to transfer supplier proprietary information to the utility customer.

I came to Westinghouse from one of its competitors. I have confidential information I developed while working for that competitor. Sharing some of it with my new Westinghouse colleagues can really help us with the upcoming bid on a large project. Can I share this information since I developed it?

No. This would be in breach of your obligations to your previous employer, possibly the law, and also our Code of Ethics. You have the obligation to protect your prior employer’s confidential or proprietary information as you have an obligation to protect Westinghouse’s confidential or proprietary information. General knowledge and skills obtained during your prior position can be used, but protected or confidential information may not be shared. If you are unsure, consult Legal for further guidance.

I am working on a project in China and it is not entirely clear what markings should be on documents and what I can and cannot share with our partners or potential customers. How can I get help to ensure I am properly marking and protecting Westinghouse information?

The answer can be complicated and so you are always right to seek guidance. You may seek guidance from our Proprietary Information Coordinator or through the Help Chain.


Intellectual property:

Any and all rights in and arising out of patents and patent applications, industrial designs, trademarks, service marks, brands, logos, trade and business names, copyrights, works of authorship, trade secrets, know-how, inventions, improvements, technology, business and technical information, databases, data compilations, methods, processes and techniques, and all other intellectual or industrial property, and proprietary or other legally enforceable rights, whether registered or not, and any registration of such rights.

Proprietary information:

Information, data, software, drawings, designs, specifications, hardware, matter, or things of a secret, proprietary, or private nature relating to the business of the Company, including matters of a technical nature (such as know-how, processes, data, and techniques), matters of a business nature (such as information about schedules, costs, profits, markets, sales, and customers), matters of a proprietary nature (such as information about patents, patent applications, copyrights, trade secrets, and trademarks), or other information of a similar nature that gives the Company a competitive advantage in the marketplace.

Trade secret:

A trade secret is information, including a formula, pattern, compilation, program, device, method, technique, process, or know-how, that has economic value because it is not known to the public.