Cyberspace posing challenges to legal framework

user Yulia V. Akinfieva, M.B.A,LL.M. calender 22 Mar 2016 views 1832 Views

The legal profession has been changing over time, adopting new fields and challenges. Globalization, development of internet and technologies all led to the change in lives, change in the way businesses are conducted, in the way people spend their leisure time

and, also, the way people commit crimes.


These rapid changes undoubtedly led to the change in legal landscape, change in legal frameworks, practice and points of focus. As internet and new technologies open new opportunities and horizons, the global world becomes massively interconnected.

From my personal and work experience, I can see that the legal battles of tomorrow are emerging today, particularly, in the field of intellectual property and electronic crimes. The younger prodigy generation, born to a highly developed technological world, has rejected many of the accepted norms of legal principle such as intellectual property. Millions download books, music, videos from internet for free on daily basis. This in itself poses challenges in the area of intellectual property rights. Meanwhile, that very new generation comes into positions of authority in government and businesses, striving to re-define existing legal framework. Moreover, appearing new channels and technologies require newly defined legal frameworks.

Internet crimes, on the other hand, constitute another focal point to be raised. Electronic signatures, e-contracts, accessibility to personal information, social networks, communication channels such as Skype, e-mails and such all made the world more open, accessible, interconnected expanding the global community; and also opened doors for criminals and their sophisticated electronic crimes. Many fell victims of scammers, identity theft, data loss due to malware programs, system breakdown due to the activity of hackers, just to mention few. Our law firm recently has dealt with three such cases, out of which two were committed against Youssry Saleh Law Firm. Now, since the matter became global and involves many jurisdictions and the cyberspace, and is developing at a rapid space, the legal landscape until now does not accommodate fully for such incidents, neither does it provide clear framework for rights protection, and applicable legal actions against ‘electronic criminals’.

Furthermore, internet related sources have been integrated by the legislator whereby cyber means of evidencing such as electronic signatures, e-mails, Skype conversations and so on have become accepted in courtrooms. Now, considering the matter, the issue of information validity and integrity becomes apparent and would present complex challenges to the professionals working in the field of law.

Above mentioned developments of the last few years have clearly illustrated that volatility became the new norm. Therefore, talking about impact on organizational structures and operations, it becomes evident that the focus will be aimed at risk minimization, be it related to corporate governance, tax, consumer law, etc. Moreover, with the appearance of new threats, organizations might modify their structures by creating specialized departments to remedy the risks and dangers such as electronic crimes. In other words, organizations in such volatile times will seek protection through organizational development and structuring as well as through the law and changing legal framework.