This Week's Techlaw News Round-Up

Government response to drone report, EDPB opinion on draft SCCs, WIPO paper on AI and IP, ESMA consultation on cloud computing, ASA annual report and more in this week’s round-up of techlaw news from the past week.

House of Commons Science & Technology Committee publishes government response to drone report

The House of Commons Science & Technology Select Committee has published the UK government’s response to the Committee’s earlier report on drone use. UK government says that it aims to provide an agile regulatory landscape, which not only keeps pace with technological development but also enables and supports new opportunities, and the CAA has established the Innovation Hub, a central function aimed at facilitating the development of innovative aviation models. The government agrees with some of the Committee’s recommendations in part, but disagrees with others. As an example, the government says that the UK’s future relationship with the EU must not entail application of EU law in the UK. Participation in the EASA system is incompatible with this stance. The government proposes agreeing a Bilateral Aviation Safety Agreement with the EU to minimise regulatory burdens for industry. It says that certain issues such as protection of privacy are already dealt with in existing legislation. It is considering whether geo-fencing should be rolled out as a compulsory measure around prisons and other high security sites but rejects banning drone use around helicopter landing sites.

EDPB publishes opinion on draft SCCs under Article 28 of the GDPR

The European Data Protection Board has issued its opinion on the draft Standard Contractual Clauses for controller-processor contracts put forward to the EDPB by the Slovenian supervisory authority. The EDPB recently adopted the opinion at its 28th Plenary. The opinion aims to ensure consistent application of Article 28 of the GDPR, which requires controllers and processors to enter into a contract or other legal act stipulating the parties’ respective obligations. Under Article 28(6), such contracts or other legal acts may be based, in whole or in part, on SCCs adopted by a supervisory authority. The EDPB makes several recommendations that need to be taken into account so that the draft SCCs to be considered as SCCs. If all recommendations are implemented, the Slovenian supervisory authority will be able to adopt the draft agreement as SCCs under Article 28(8).

WIPO issues revised issues paper on AI and IP

Following a consultation, the World Intellectual Property Organization has published a revised issues paper on intellectual property policy and artificial intelligence as part of its ongoing consultation with stakeholders on the intersection of AI and IP policy. It will hold a virtual Second Conversation on the paper in July, following a First Conversation in September.

ESMA consults on cloud outsourcing guidelines

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), the EU’s securities markets regulator, has published a consultation paper on guidelines on outsourcing to cloud service providers. The guidelines’ purpose is to provide guidance on the outsourcing requirements applicable to financial market participants when they outsource to cloud service providers. In particular, they aim to help firms and competent authorities identify, address and monitor the risks and challenges that arise from cloud outsourcing arrangements. The proposed guidelines set out: the governance, documentation, oversight and monitoring mechanisms that firms should have in place; the assessment and due diligence which should be undertaken before outsourcing; the minimum elements that outsourcing and sub-outsourcing agreements should include; the exit strategies and the access and audit rights that should to be catered for; the notification to competent authorities; and the supervision by competent authorities. The consultation ends on 1 September 2020.

Seller of illegal devices that bypassed paid-for TV content jailed

A seller of illegal devices that bypassed paid-for TV content has been jailed for 12 months after pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit fraud. In 2017 Greater Manchester Police launched a joint investigation alongside FACT into A, who was a serving GMP police officer at the time. Investigations confirmed A was involved in managing a company that produced Internet Protocol Television devices that allowed access to content like sport and films that typically require a monthly subscription. It also sold streaming services. The losses to legitimate service providers was estimated to be more than £2 million.

ASA issues annual report for 2019

The Advertising Standards Authority has issued its annual report for 2019. The report details the ASA’s work during 2019. The issues which may be of most interest to tech lawyers include the ASA’s use of avatar monitoring technology to regulate advertising and the fact that complaints relating to influencer advertising made up more than a quarter of all online complaints—4,401 complaints about 3,670 ads.

Review of the Network and Information Systems Regulations published

The government has issued a review of the Network and Information Systems Regulations SI 2018/506, which came into force in 2018. The regulations aim to raise security standards across key sectors of the economy, including transport, energy, water, health, digital infrastructure and digital services. The review assesses how effective the regulations have been, how the regulations have been implemented and the costs and benefits incurred. While the evidence suggests that it is too early to judge the long term impact of the regulations, organisations are taking measures to ensure the security of their networks and information systems as a result of the Regulations being in place. This is expected to lead to a reduction in the risks posed to essential services and important digital services which rely on networks and information systems. The review comes at an important time for wider policy development in this area. Findings from this review will inform broader policy development on ensuring organisations are effectively managing their cyber security risk. 

Electronic Communications (Universal Service) (Costs) Regulations 2020 made

The Electronic Communications (Universal Service) (Costs) Regulations 2020 SI 2020/545 have been made. They come into force on 15 June 2020. They set out the rules and procedures which the Ofcom will follow when assessing the extent of the financial burden associated with the provision of a universal service and, where appropriate, compensating a universal service provider for those costs under sections 70 and 71 of the Communications Act 2003. 

Wireless Telegraphy (Exemption and Amendment) (Amendment) Regulations 2020 made

The Wireless Telegraphy (Exemption and Amendment) (Amendment) Regulations 2020 SI 2020/549 have been made. The Regulations amend the Wireless Telegraphy (Exemption and Amendment) Regulations 2010 (the Principal Regulations). The Regulations exempt the establishment, installation and use of certain devices which comply with certain terms, provisions and limitations, from the requirement to be licensed under section 8(1) of the Wireless Telegraphy Act 2006.

Published: 2020-06-05T14:30:00

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