Respect for and protection of intellectual property


The Group will protect and respect intellectual property and manage information assets appropriately and strictly.

Awareness of Issues

The Shin-Etsu Group believes intellectual property such as products and technologies developed in-house are important information assets and they need to be controlled strictly. At the same time, we think it is important to respect the intellectual property of other entities.
We are adequately controling information in our possession such as intellectual property, business information, and technology information, and are taking utmost care for measures to counter potential information leakage and cyberattack incidents.

Intellectual Property Management

The Company has established "Basic Regulations for Intellectual Properties", based on the policy of "applying for and acquiring valid patents to protect our business and increase business value, and not to infringe on the patents of other companies." In accordance with these regulations, we are working to acquire, manage, and utilize intellectual property assets.

We acquire useful and highly original intellectual property assets based on these regulations and we protect them from infringement by third parties. These regulations also require us to respect all intellectual property rights of third parties.

In addition, we educate each researcher so that they can prepare specifications for patent applications, and we are focusing on creating a system that allows them to conduct research while keeping patents in mind.

Furthermore, employees who have devised useful inventions, improvements, and devices at work have been awarded under the following systems:

Actual Compensation Awards

A system to recognize and award employees who have created an invention or idea which greatly contributed to the company in the form of patents

Multiple Inventor Awards

A system to recognize employees who have made a large number of inventions and acquired a large number of patent rights in the company

Related Information

Sustainability Data

Employee Initiatives

Ms. RA Development Headquarters Intellectual Property Department Shin-Etsu Polymer

Ms. RA,
Development Headquarters Intellectual Property Department,
Shin-Etsu Polymer

1.Please tell us about your current responsibilities.
I am mainly in charge of domestic and overseas patent applications and acquisition of patents related to semiconductor transport containers and wrapping films including Kitche Nista Co., Ltd. I am also in charge of handling counterfeit goods from overseas that have been consulted by departments, and confirmation of contract drafts requested by the general affairs department. In addition, the company began digitizing documents with the introduction of telecommuting and I manage these documents as well. Furthermore, I provide explanations at IP training sessions for new employees and those with limited IP experience, and create e-learning materials for beginner-level IP training. And I also report and make proposals on the latest topics, cases and issues that should be shared throughout the company at the monthly Patent Managers' Meeting and at the Patent Committee meetings held twice a year.

2. How do you protect your company's intellectual property?
We strive to maximize our rights by filing patent applications at an early stage of development concept design or prototyping, and then filing multifaceted applications, such as priority applications and divisional applications, as the business progresses. We also protect and utilize intellectual property that can ensure the competitive advantage of our business by filing applications for peripheral technologies that prevent other companies from entering the market. In addition to patents, design protection is also used as countermeasures against counterfeit goods overseas, and effective utility model rights are used in some case for some countries. For technologies that should be kept secret as know-how without being disclosed to the public, in addition to withdrawing them prior to disclosure, we periodically ask each department to submit a list of their know-how and encourage them to keep it appropriately anonymized. For these activities, it is important to have the latest and correct information on trends provided by patent managers and inventors selected from each department. Communication with departments is also important to ensure that the intellectual property that the business will need in the future is adequately protected. We have also started working on securing usage rights using timestamps1. I feel that since the developers themselves started adding time stamps, the awareness of intellectual property has changed significantly from the perspective of "protecting information."

3. Please tell us about your efforts to ensure that you do not infringe on the intellectual property rights of others.
Patent gazettes related to the development themes and products of each division are distributed monthly to each department, and ongoing periodic searches (SDI) of gazettes that have caught the attention of the department are conducted. Depending on the scope of the rights of others, it may be necessary to take measures. Therefore, I set alert emails to be sent when cases such as requests for examination or acquisition of rights for other people's publications occur, and check each time whether or not necessary actions are taken.

4. What do you plan to focus on in the future regarding the respect and protection of intellectual property?
Recently, there is a case where we submitted a report on intellectual property rights investigation results to a retailer to determine whether or not to sell the product. I feel that there is a growing awareness of respect for intellectual property, including the Unfair Competition Prevention Act. We would like to protect our intellectual property and the Shin-Etsu brand by conducting business activities that comply with laws and regulations, corporate ethics, and social norms, and conduct intellectual property activities that respect intellectual property.

  • 1 Time stamp
    A technology that proves that electronic data existed at the time the stamp was applied and that it has not been modified or tampered with since then.

Selected as a Clarivate Top 100 Global InnovatorTMfor the 12 Consecutive Year

For the 12 consecutive year, the company has been awarded the Top 100 Global Innovator, which identifies and celebrates the world's most innovative companies and organizations.

The award is granted by Clarivate (United Kingdom)̶a global information services company that analyzes intellectual property assets and patent trends based on its patent data̶to the world's leading companies and organizations that are engaged in protecting original inventions with intellectual property rights, and successfully commercializing them. Nine Japanese companies, including our company, have been awarded for the 12 consecutive year, and we are the only chemical company among them.

Selected as a Derwent Top 100 Global InnovatorTM for the Tenth Consecutive Year

Initiatives for Information Asset Management

For daily business operations and smooth communication, it is extremely important to use information assets effectively. On the other hand, the risk of information being leaked or otherwise mishandled is growing due to the inappropriate management of information assets. For this reason, all personnel who handle information are required to understand the importance of information assets and manage and use them properly. In the case of an emergency, we must prevent it from becoming worse and affecting other operations, and make the greatest possible effort to maintain information security on a Group-wide basis.

Regulations are set under the "Information Asset Management Basic Policy" to protect, utilize, control, and manage information assets. Furthermore, related rules and regulations such as "Information Asset Management Standards" stipulate the details concerning the handling, management, retention period, and discarding of all information related to our customers and suppliers.

In addition, we have formulated the "Standards for Preventing Technology Leaks" in order to prevent the outflow of technologies. We also regularly carry out training related to information asset management, check the status of compliance with the "Information Asset Management Basic Policy" and other rules, and perform internal audits. The Shin-Etsu Chemical head office and information management local offices established in each region play a central role in confirming the storage and management status of information assets through audits of all departments throughout the company. We are working to further advance the prevention of information leaks and the organizing information and effective use of information.

Protection of Personal Information

In order to properly protect personal information in accordance with the Act on the Protection of Personal Information, we have established a "Privacy Policy," which is available on our website.
We also educate our staff on laws and regulations and hold lectures regarding personal information protection in trainings for each staff rank in order to ensure the appropriate handling and protection of personal information.

Group companies in the EU area comply with the EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR),1 which came into force in May 2018.

  • 1 General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
    The General Data Protection Regulation stipulates on the handling and transfer of personal information. EU member countries had their own regulations to protect personal data, and these regulations were unified under the General Data Protection Regulation in May 2018.

Cyber Security

In preparation for cyber-attacks, we have bolstered our surveillance system with an intrusion detection service that operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. We also received security diagnoses from external contractors, and continue to take necessary security measures.

In addition, we we invite outside experts to give lectures on cyber security. In FY2022, we set August as Security Enhancement Month, and a lecture was held by the National Police Agency on the themes of "Risk of Technology Leakage to Foreign Countries" and "Cyber-Attack Countermeasures conducted by the Police".

We have deployed a system to prevent targeted email attacks. In addition to measures for preventing intrusions, we are strengthening our measures for detecting and analyzing attacks. Furthermore, we have separated the information network from the control network to minimize the impact of any incidents.

In order to raise employee awareness of security, we also conduct targeted email attack drills every year for the Shin-Etsu Chemical and group companies. E-mails simulating the latest targeted attack techniques were sent to all participants four times a year, and after the training was completed, explanatory materials on targeted attack e-mails were distributed to all participants. We provide individual training to each employee those who opened the targeted e-mails at least twice during the drill.