According to the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) intellectual property refers to the ‘products of the mind: inventions, literary and artistic works, any symbols, names, images, and designs used in commerce’. With the same tone, the World Trade Organisation (WTO) has offered its own definition: ‘Intellectual property rights are rights given to people over the creation of their minds. Creators can be given the right to prevent others from using their inventions, designs or other creations. These rights are known as “intellectual property rights”’.
The various kinds of intellectual property that are afforded protection are patents, copyright, industrial designs, trademarks and confidential information.
Protection of IP rights such a patents, industrial designs and trademarks follow a registration procedure domestically, internationally or within the EU.