International Harmonised Laws Are Foundation For Global Trade And Digital Economy

Use of information and communication technology (ICT) has many advantages. ICT has also created many global brands and companies that are helping global stakeholders. Technologies like artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), blockchain, big data and data analysis, internet of things (IoT), etc have also created interest among many people and companies. However, there is a trend to overstate the utility and benefits of these technology and there is no concern for the regulatory compliance arising out of the use of such technologies.

When technology was used during the period of 2000, many countries enacted dedicated laws to govern use of technology of that time. India also enacted its own cyber law in the form of Information Technology Act, 2000 (IT Act 2000). It has served its purpose and now we need dedicated laws for privacy, cyber crimes, cyber security, data protection, e-commerce, e-governance, etc. As on date India has no dedicated laws for each of these fields except a  single law in the form of IT Act 2000 that has incorporated one or few sections for each field. We at Perry4Law Organisation (P4LO) request Indian government to formulate dedicated laws for the fields as mentioned above.

To help Indian government and global stakeholders to formulate and implement techno legal issues, we at P4LO have launched a unique techno legal project named TeleLaw. It is a global initiative and is helping global stakeholders in fields like cyber law, cyber security, cyber forensics, cyber crimes investigation, e-discovery, AI, ML, IoT, blockchain, crypto currency, e-commerce, e-governance, etc. The TeleLaw Blog is also sharing articles in the techno legal field for global stakeholders. We at TeleLaw would love to help Indian government, international organisation and foreign government to make and amend their laws in conformity with latest technologies and developments.

Global business community has already ignored formulating crucial laws in various techno legal fields. For instance, we do not have a universally acceptable cyber law treaty. India is still maintaining its status as a non-member of the Europe-led Budapest Convention, even as it voted in favour of a Russian-led UN resolution to set up a separate convention. Similarly, we do not have a global cyber security treaty that can be referred to resolve global cyber security related disputes. With two of the most relevant laws are missing from the international scene, we are simply ignoring the regulatory fiasco that we would face soon. Everything is depended upon effective international cyber law and international cyber security laws. If they are missing, we are inviting chaos and illegalities to our Internet and cyberspace.

For instance, if country A allows deployment of hackers and cyber armies to do all sorts of illegal acts with an immunity to such hackers and cyber armies, how can we conduct international trade in goods and services effectively? Simply throwing technologies like AI, ML, blockchain, IoT, etc into the mix would not make us either modern or help us to reap their benefits till we have a harmonised legal framework at the international level. We have also launched our own LegalTech, RegTech and other Techno Legal Projects but all of them follow both national and international laws. Not only this, they are also helping national and international stakeholders to remain on the right side of the law. We cannot keep our eyes closed and pretend that Internet/cyberspace is a safe and secure environment and simply using technologies like AI, ML, blockchain, etc would solve all problems.

We did a research on many LegalTech, RegTech and other projects by global stakeholders. What we found that their main focus is upon automation and self regulation. They have failed to understand that we can neither automate nor manage issues of cyber law, cyber security, privacy, data protection, etc by using AI, blockchain, ML, etc in totality. If we desire to use international rules and standards for these technologies, we must first resolve the conflict of law issue. We cannot and we should not automate something that does not exist or that is subject to complicated conflict of law. We can test automation and self regulation for a very limited segment of business but pushing such technologies without a robust international regulatory framework is inviting big trouble.

We have a major conflict of law in cyberspace. That is why we launched a dedicated blog titled Conflict of Law in Cyberspace, Internet and Computer Era. We are discussing how we can manage conflict of law in cyberspace, especially when we lack international norms pertaining to cyber law and cyber security. We are also trying to solve conflict of law issues using our LegalTech and TechLaw projects. We are in talk with international collaborators in this regard so that we can formulate a techno legal framework in fields like cyber law, cyber security, AI, ML, IoT, smart cities, privacy and data protection, etc. We also suggest that till the time we have universally applicable cyber law and cyber security treaties, we must strengthen the process of   mutual legal assistance treaty (MLAT).

Use of automation, self regulation and latest technology must be encouraged but only for a limited purposes till we have a comprehensive techno legal global framework in this regard. But when LegalTech and RegTech companies make tall claims with clear ignorance of the importance of regulatory oversight, that is a cause of concern. It is for the international organisations like WTO, UN, ITC, etc to choose the right direction in this regard and the right direction is techno legal in nature where both technology and law merge for the greater benefit of global stakeholders.