To date, the main legacy of the Brexit referendum of 2016 appears to be a country split in half: some badly wish the UK would continue to be a member of the EU and some are equally keen on making a move. Yet, there seems to be at least one thing on which Remainers and Leavers will agree: nobody knows … Continue Reading
Evidencing in court that a defamatory statement has caused harm to your reputation can be notoriously difficult. The courts in the UK have therefore traditionally proceeded on the basis that, where a statement is proven to be defamatory, harm is presumed, unless the defendant can prove otherwise. This approach was brought into doubt by the Defamation Act 2013 (the “Act”), … Continue Reading
On 19 April 2017, the UK Government’s Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) published a report on cybersecurity breaches and how they affected UK companies in the last year. Headline statistics from the report include:
- 61% of businesses hold personal data electronically;
- 46% of all UK businesses identified at least one cybersecurity breach in the past year, rising to
The UK ICO has published what it describes as a feedback request on profiling and automated decision-making, with the intention that responses will “help inform the UK’s contribution to the WP29 guidelines due to be published later this year.”
Given the growing importance of profiling to most businesses, companies should consider whether they wish to contribute their views, particularly on … Continue Reading
The UK Information Commissioner’s Office has just published draft guidance on consent under GDPR. This is an interesting move given that the Article 29 Working Party has promised guidance on the same topic later this year, but reading the guidance makes it clear why the ICO decided to prioritise it: many of the practices which it identifies as unacceptable are … Continue Reading
Last week, the UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) published a monetary penalty notice which fined a private healthcare company, HCA International, £200,000 for its failure to keep sensitive data secure.
In this instance, several data protection compliance issues were at stake – HCA had engaged a subcontractor based in India to process sensitive personal data without putting an agreement in … Continue Reading
Data brokers are organisations that obtain data from a variety of sources and then sell or license it to third parties. Many trade in personal data, which is purchased by their customers for several purposes, most commonly to support marketing campaigns. In 2012, data brokers’ trade in personal data was reported to have generated over $150 billion in revenue.
The … Continue Reading
After all of the 2016 drama, the start of a brand new year is a welcome development in itself – a clean sheet for a script yet to be written. However, 2017 will not be without challenges and the same applies to the world of privacy and data protection. Many of the big issues that arose during 2016 will need … Continue Reading
In yet another key case dealing with the balance between citizens’ privacy and the ability of the state to intrude into it, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has ruled on the compatibility with European Union law of legislation that authorises the retention of communications data, which includes personal data. The reference from the UK Court of … Continue Reading
Ofcom’s announcement of plans to make Openreach a “legally separate” company within BT have been met with muted cheers from some in the telecoms world, while others caution that the proposals do not go far enough to ensure the UK gets the investment it needs.
In February of this year, the regulator set out a ten-year vision for ensuring the … Continue Reading
Earlier this week, four Hogan Lovells partners met virtually and discussed the impact of Brexit on the Commission’s Digital Single Market strategy as announced on 6th of May 2015 (COM(2015) 192 final) and as currently put into practice by way of numerous legislative initiatives. Don McGown (London), Winston Maxwell (Paris), Nils Rauer (Frankfurt) and Falk Schoening (Brussels) … Continue Reading
The people of the UK have spoken and our collective choice is to leave the European Union. Some are dreading the likely tsunami of economic hardship. Others are excited about what may lie ahead. Most of us are shocked. But as numbing as the verdict of the UK electorate may be, there are crucial political, legal and economic decisions to … Continue Reading
The thing about referendums is that the consequences of one outcome or another are likely to be rather disparate. If Brexit turns out to be rejected by the majority of the UK electorate, we will simply carry on as normal – quietly enjoying the benefits of the European Union whilst moaning about the threat that the EU poses to our … Continue Reading
This week’s intervention by the Competition and Markets Authority in the ongoing, hard-fought review of CK Hutchison’s bid for O2 UK supports the views already expressed by the EU competition commissioner and reflects a closeness of interaction between European regulators. But this closeness could disappear if the UK votes to leave the EU in June.
The review of the deal… Continue Reading
The need for proper and legitimate powers to enable intelligence and law enforcement agencies to do their job and keep everyone safe requires little justification. We live in a dangerous and uncertain world where anyone can be a victim of intolerance. So in a show of political awareness and legislative dexterity, the UK government is currently seeking to adopt a … Continue Reading
The UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is known to prefer an “engaging” rather than an enforcement approach with organisations. However, when looking at the “action we’ve taken” page on the ICO website the ICO’s enforcement activity seems to be increasing by the day. While the ICO has stated that it wants to focus its enforcement efforts going forward on unsolicited … Continue Reading
Last month we reported on the case of BASCA v Secretary of State for Business and Innovation in which Green J held that the Government’s introduction of a UK “private copying” exception was unlawful. On 17 July 2015 Green J handed down a follow-up judgment quashing the regulations that introduced the private copying exception. This means that, going forward, the … Continue Reading
On 19 June 2015, Green J handed down his judgment in British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors (BASCA) and Secretary of State for Business Innovation and Skills. The case involved a judicial review of the Secretary of State’s decision to introduce an exception into UK copyright law that allows individuals to make copies of copyright works they have … Continue Reading
In a Statement and Consultation published on 26 May 2015, Ofcom, the UK telecoms regulator, published updated plans on the release of spectrum in the 2.3 and 3.4 GHz spectrum bands and it opened a consultation on options for proceeding with the award in light of potential changes in the mobile market in the UK.
The 2.3 and 3.4 GHz … Continue Reading
Amendments to the Computer Misuse Act 1990 (“CMA”) introduced by Part 2 of the Serious Crime Act 2015 (“2015 Act”) came into effect on the 3rd May 2015. The 2015 Act makes 4 changes to the CMA, in particular these:
- Create a new offence to ensure that the most serious cyber attacks attract penalties commensurate with the harm caused;
The emergence of a digital economy presents challenging tax questions. The non-tangible nature of the new technologies affects the ability of the tax authorities to successfully tax digital transactions and leads to a shortfall in fiscal revenue. Governments are therefore trying to reform their tax rules in order to be able to tax part of the profits made by digital … Continue Reading
After Ed Richards announced in October 2014 that he would step down as Ofcom Chief Executive at the end of the year, the hunt for his successor was on and in late December 2014, the Ofcom Board announced the appointment of Sharon White as Chief Executive.
On 29 October 2014 the UK government released its orphan works licensing scheme (the “Scheme”). An “orphan work” is a copyright work or performance for which one or more of the right holders is either unknown or cannot be found after a diligent search.
Under the Scheme any person wishing to use an orphan work for commercial or non-commercial purposes … Continue Reading
A recent survey from the UK Government’s Department for Business, Innovation & Skills has highlighted that the majority of FTSE 350 firms are not regularly taking cyber risks into account in their decision making. Despite a growing international trend in cyber crime targeted at businesses, the survey showed that only 14 percent of FTSE 350 companies regularly consider cyber threats, … Continue Reading