The Post Office Horizon scandal: the law says computers are reliable

The Post Office Horizon scandal will probably have come to the attention of most lawyers over the last 12 months. There are a number of significant issues other than legal that surround the scandal, and Paul Marshall of Cornerstone Barristers, Gray’s Inn, succinctly summarises them in a lecture he gave at the University of Law […]

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UK mass surveillance breaches the ECHR

In the wake of the 2013 Edward Snowden affair, in which a former contractor for the National Security Agency (NSA) revealed that mass surveillance programmes were being operated by the UK and US intelligence services, a collection of journalists and human rights organisations brought a case against the UK government, challenging the bulk interception of […]

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How will the Online Safety Bill affect my online service?

No-one could fault the ambition of the new Online Safety Bill. It aims to keep children safe, reduce online racism, fraud and harassment, protect democracy and enshrine free speech. All of these are laudable aims, but those who practise in the field of online publication and safety know how hard it has historically been to […]

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What’s new at vLex?

Two years on from Justis Since Justis was acquired by vLex two years ago, the teams have now fully integrated. With centralised development and editorial operations, the vLex and Justis teams now work together to increase the volume of legal information available on the service. However, the formerly Justis sales, accounts and marketing teams continue […]

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The EU AI Regulations: taming the machine

Finally, after nearly three years of consultation, white papers and industry input, on 21st April 2021, the European Commission published its proposals for Laying Down Harmonised Rules on Artificial Intelligence (the “Regulations”). The over-arching aim of the Regulations is to ensure that fast changing AI technology is applied and supplied across Europe according to a […]

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The long road to driverless cars

In 2016 article in the Newsletter about driverless cars I noted that Google founder Sergey Brin had predicted that driverless cars would be available for consumers by 2017. When this failed to transpire, Ford claimed that it would be selling a self-driving vehicle with “no gas pedal” and “no steering wheel” by 2021. Half way […]

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Triage should be properly built in to the Online Money Claims process

Addressing the latest monthly members’ meeting of the International Council for Online Dispute Resolution on 6 May 2021, Lord Michael Briggs expressed his disappointment that, almost five years since his Final Report on The Civil Courts Structure Review, in which he recommended that a form of early triage be introduced to an online civil court, […]

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What does the Cloud offer law firms?

In recent years there has been a cultural and emotional shift with the Cloud becoming an everyday part of our lives and yet few of us can truly describe what the Cloud is. There remains something of the black arts about it that can cause uncertainty, especially for potential business users who are used to […]

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When automated decisions fail

Managers are increasingly reliant on computer software and algorithms when assessing the performance of their staff. This is the case both in traditional forms of employment where there is a clear employer-employee relationship, and with gig economy arrangements which muddy the water by attempting (sometimes unsuccessfully) to classify staff as self-employed contractors. One of the […]

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What are non-fungible tokens?

Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are part of the Ethereum blockchain. Ethereum is a cryptocurrency (like Bitcoin), but in addition to supporting the market value of the currency, NFTs have been designed also to store their own totally unique digital information. Although this information could take almost any form – designs, music, serious collectables – by far the greatest […]

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Bookmarks April 2021

Cybersecurity for Lawyers is a wiki from Neil Brown of internet, tech and telecoms law firm decoded.legal. It’s a primer for lawyers on practical cybersecurity for law firms. Straightforward, no fuss, detailed but easy to follow advice – for example this on passwords. Lawtomated is a collaborative learning resource aimed at lawyer and non-lawyer alike […]

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State sponsored cyberattacks: what lawyers need to know

Sunburst: a moment of reckoning Towards the end of 2020, the National Security Agency (NSA) issued a warning, claiming that “Russian state-sponsored malicious cyber actors” had essentially hacked into a piece of network management software belonging to SolarWinds, which was installed on networks belonging to US government agencies and almost all Fortune 500 companies. Following […]

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