In any event, it is an inferior way of dealing with the true legal state of affairs.
The need to document transactions is partly based on commercial necessity, and partly on legal necessity.
Parties may be tempted to ‘back date’ the documents to when their plans were devised or agreed.
However doing so is at very least misleading and deceptive conduct (because the date of a document means the date that it is signed), and at worst may constitute criminal fraud.
Sometimes a group of companies which has reorganised itself will want to backdate some of those changes, perhaps to backdate an intra-group transfer of business so that it coincides with the previous year end.
Here are some guidelines as to what may be possible from a legal perspective.
This avoids confusion and ambiguity that could call the enforceability of the contract into question. For example, every other project you worked on was confidential, for the office policy is to keep unreleased projects confidential. to the extent that it doesn't involve criminality but may render the agreement unenforceable.
Documenting what happened in the past What you can do is document a transaction which has actually happened in the past which had not been formalised.
Or could doing so (backdating such a document) be considered fraud, forgery, or anything illegal, or even for some reason ethically or morally wrong?
It seems to me that it might be legal (assuming that I as the employee were willing to sign it) because as an employee I'd assume that some NDA was in place even if haven't signed one (so it's as if the agreement or meeting of minds was in place even before it was documented).
Sometimes certain claims (such as insurance claims) can be backdated if the could not be completed at an earlier date, although there must be good reason for neglecting to claim in advance.
If your backdated claim is approved, you will be able to receive benefits from a certain date in the past.