This is a prime example of a question that a lot of people wonder about, yet never ask. As Dana and Joshua have pointed out, a confidential disclosure agreement (CDA) and a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) are the same thing, and can be used interchangeably. Both agreements function as a contract between two or more parties agreeing that certain information exchanged between them will not be disclosed to others. You may run into even more names for this type of agreement, such as a confidentiality agreement, proprietary information agreement and secrecy agreement. It really makes no difference which one you use.
What does make a difference is that your agreement contains the necessary components. A solid NDA / CDA will describe the parties involved, the type of information that is deemed confidential, information excluded from agreement, the repercussions for failing to keep the relevant information confidential, and the term of the agreement. Your agreement may include other provisions depending on your company’s specifics – that’s why it’s important to consult with an attorney rather than relying on a “do it yourself” website. You want to ensure your agreement hits the necessary points.
Trade secrets and intellectual property (IP) can be the most valuable assets for a company so it’s worth drafting a strong agreement to protect them. Feel free to check outto have a skilled business attorney draft a CDA or NDA particular to your company.