One thing that can cause complications for a modern business is the way in which intellectual properties affect the running on a day to day basis.
Escrow is a word that could be important for you whether you are an end user of systems or if you are involved in the development and commercial offering of any number of services or products that rely on intellectual copyrights.
Not everyone outside of the USA is familiar with exactly what it means, although many will have come across it using popular online auction sites. Essentially, escrow entails something being put in the hands of a third party while an agreement or transaction between others is underway. Learn more here.
The process can effectively protect all parties involved in a transaction without giving any advantage or disadvantage to either.
In commercial terms escrow services offer a simple arrangement designed to minimise risk and protect the interests of all the parties involved. When it comes to software, digital systems and internet usage, it can be applied to many different situations.
A complex system such as a control software suite for business or industrial purposes may need a back-up system which means that the purchaser can maintain and modify it even if the supplier ceases trading. However, suppliers may be reluctant to supply open access to their ‘crown jewels’ of source code or other intellectual property that may be involved.
By using a company such as Escrow Associates, many Fortune 100 companies and top law firms use software escrow and software verification solutions to make sure that potential problems are avoided.
A typical escrow agreement might see a copy of the source code behind a system-critical application held securely by the third party with both the end user and supplier’s agreement. Access would then only be granted under prearranged conditions and if the criteria had matched, meaning both parties would have all their interests protected.
In this way using an escrow service ensures that a purchaser has long-term availability of source code and all other data or materials needed for the repair or reboot of a system, even if the original supplier no longer provides the services. By the same token, the owner of the intellectual property is assured that their rights are protected until the agreed situations arise for the release of any information.
Making use of software escrow and verification services is not limited to simple software suite transactions as any process which involves the sharing of sensitive materials can dealt with in a similar way.