What’s “proprietary” mean?

The boss asks an employee to provide “edgy, proprietary” information.  The employee then got confidential information from four tech companies and passed it on to his boss.  His boss  traded on it.

What does “proprietary” mean?  See http://bit.ly/1aAqSZ7 for the Dictionary.com definition.  Clearly, the boss didn’t mean information already owned by his company, did he?

“Government Witness Is Pressed On Whether He Misread Lingo,” Wall Street Journal, December 4, 2013 C3 http://on.wsj.com/IIjkNz  The SAC saga.

The controls at at least five companies failed.  First, at the four companies (Dell, Nvidia, Sun Microsystems and Ingram Micro), employees of which provided Mr. Horvath proprietary information. Second, at SAC, an employee of which received the data and passed it along, and another employee of which allegedly traded on it.

Apparently, traders at SAC were asked for “proprietary” information from their first day of employment.  I guess in their culture that didn’t mean “someone else’s” information.  But then, what did it mean?  Is there a civil suit for theft?

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Filed under Business Case, Controls, Culture, Governance, Information, Internal controls, Legal, Operations, Ownership, Policy, Requirements, Risk, Third parties, Use, Value

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