This article from Corporate Counsel provides great advice on how to protect your trade secrets while collaborating with third-parties.  As the article notes, you should consider:

Using a non-disclosure agreement to protect your interests
Limiting the sharing of information to those who need to know
Marking the information "confidential" 
Clearly identifying the items you consider to be trade secrets
Training your staff on how to handle sensitive information

For additional tips and advice, check out DRI's State-By-State Compendium on Trade Secrets and Agreements Not to Compete.  The law on trade secrets and non-disclosure agreements varies greatly by state and the Compendium serves as a fantastic resource for quick answers about the confines of each state's law on these topics.  

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