Outside the Benelux

Protection of your trademark or design outside the Benelux is recommended if you are going to offer or sell your goods and services outside the Benelux. There are various options for protection outside the Benelux, each with their own advantages and disadvantages.

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Entrepreneurs all over the world can use the i-DEPOT to record their ideas. If a dispute arises between two people or companies, they will try to obtain a ruling in their favour in legal proceedings. They will present evidence, for example. You are initially allowed to present all the evidence you have in legal proceedings, but the court will decide how important a given piece of evidence is.

The i-DEPOT is a means of evidence laid down in the Benelux Convention on Intellectual Property (BCIP). It is an official PDF document which contains an electronic signature compliant with the European Directive on electronic identification and trust services. The i-DEPOT is therefore accepted as evidence throughout the EU. It can also be used in countries outside of Europe. Courts in countries outside of Europe decide for themselves whether to accept the i-DEPOT as evidence. Since BOIP is the official body in the Benelux for registering trademarks and models and the i-DEPOT is defined in the BCIP, courts outside of Europe are likely to accept the i-DEPOT as evidence.


Frequently Asked Questions

Can I also submit an i-DEPOT on paper?

Yes. You can use the i-DEPOT envelope if you do not want to record the concept or idea in an electronic format, or if you are unable or unwilling to pay online. We will send you the i-DEPOT envelope upon receipt of the order form and your payment.

The i-DEPOT envelope comes in two sections. You place an identical document describing or showing your creation as clearly as possible in each of the two sections. You return both envelope sections to BOIP. BOIP will date your i-DEPOT envelope upon receipt. One section will be sent back to you, the second will be stored unopened in our archive. You can obtain this section from BOIP as evidence in the event of a dispute arising. You can only do this once.

Download Order form for i-DEPOT envelope

Can I use i-DEPOT to stop others from using my idea?

No, that is not possible. The i-DEPOT does not give you a monopoly, as a trademark, for instance, would. The i-DEPOT is a form of evidence (PDF with date stamp) that you can use to show when your creation existed. This could be useful in the event of a dispute in which you want to prove that your creation existed earlier.

I want to submit an i-DEPOT, but I cannot upload a file. What should I do?

There are two possible causes:

  1. Incorrect file format. Check that your file is in one of the following formats: pdf, jpg, jpeg, png, txt, doc, docx, doc, tif, tiff, xlsx, xls, pptx, ppt, png, gif, bmp, mov, mp3, mp4, m4v, avi, wmv, mpg, psd, wav, m4a, wma, aac, or zip;
  2. File size (MB) exceeded. Check the maximum size of the files you want to upload. You can add one or more files up to a maximum of 100 MB.

If you are still unable to upload files, please contact our Information Centre.

Is my idea or trade secret really secure in an i-DEPOT?

Yes, your idea or trade secret is absolutely safe in BOIP's i-DEPOT. Protecting your data is a priority for us. To that end, we have taken appropriate technical and organisational measures to safeguard the availability, integrity and confidentiality of the data we manage in i-DEPOT.

Our information security policy is based on the international standard for information security. In addition, security audits and penetration tests are performed on a regular basis. The results of these audits show time and time again that we have our information security in order. More information

When an i-DEPOT certificate is issued, your data is secured. The services of a qualified trust service provider are used to sign the electronic i-DEPOT certificate, as required by EU Regulation 910/2014 on electronic identification and trust services for electronic transactions in the internal market (eIDAS). i-DEPOT content is not sent anywhere to have the date stamp and signature applied. On the contrary, it remains in a secure (encrypted) environment at BOIP. The end result is a digital certificate, bearing a trustworthy date stamp, that guarantees that the i-DEPOT has not been modified since it was submitted.

BOIP's qualified trust service provider is QuoVadis. QuoVadis complies with an array of independent audits and accreditations, including certification as a qualified Certification Services Provider (CSP) under the ETSI standards and ISO / IEC 27001. An overview of these accreditations and certifications is provided on the QuoVadis website.

Therefore, whatever the content you place in an i-DEPOT, be it an idea, concept or trade secret, you can rest assured that it is held under seal of confidentiality and strictly secured by BOIP.

Saturday 20 July : Technical maintenance i-DEPOT

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