INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY LAW

Core Module (7,5 ECTS)

Description

The module focuses on the problems arising from the interaction of Law with Information Technology and examines “information” as a subject-matter worth legal protection. In particular the module examines two main branches: a) Substantive IT Law and b) Computer Applications in Law (Legal Informatics). The first branch covers the new right to Information Society and its restrictions due to rules concerning: i) the protection of personal data ii) the protection of secrecy of communications and iii) intellectual property. While problems of Internet regulation, enforcement of regulation, the e-Commerce Directive and the liability of intermediaries will be examined in depth, emphasis will be given also to the new tasks that legislators must tackle, such as electronic documents and digital signatures, the proof of evidence of electronic data, the electronic submission of legal documents etc. The second branch examines the area of Computer Applications In Law (Legal Informatics) by studying the new technological tools affecting the knowledge of the law in force. Particular emphasis will be given to the design, analysis and creation of legal databases (statute and case-law), the processing and retrieval of legal data and, lastly, artificial intelligence and law, with reference to the analysis of legal expert systems.


Objectives

Upon completion of the course, the students will be able to

  • identify main areas of law affected by technology
  • understand and use main concepts of law in relation to digital technologies
  • elaborate on methods to regulate new technologies / new digital media
  • analyse and critically assess case-law applying regulation to new technologies / new digital media
  • begin to utilise theoretical concepts and insights in order to respond to practical situations

Contents

The following themes will be taught:

1.   Introduction to the Course

2.   Introduction to the technology / history of computers

3.   Internet organisation and Domain Name System

4.   Internet Regulation I: The right to Information Society and its restrictions

5.   Internet Regulation II: The Liability of Intermediaries (e-Commerce, DSM Directives, proposals for new Directives)

6.   Data Protection I (general principles)

7.   Data Protection II (GDPR)

8.   Intellectual property & protection of software

9.   Cryptography & electronic signatures

10. Legal Information Systems / Artificial Intelligence and Law

11. Databases / Retrieval of Legal Information

The module will emphasize on practical questions and implementation of legal regulation. Therefore, following the above taught modules, essays / case studies will be presented in the class. Essays will mainly focus on the analysis and critical assessment of case-law of the ECHR and the ECJ.


Academic Requirements

Participants are required to show at least some basic previous interest in IT law. It is recommended to have some knowledge of Intellectual Property Law.


Teaching method

The course will run under seminar format, which requires a high degree of student activity. Materials will be distributed in electronic form. Students are expected to have studied each session’s material before class and to actively participate during class.


Lecturers

The course is taught by Associate Professor George Yannopoulos.


Assessment and testing

  • Written exam, open materials (i.e. notes, legislation & case law but not textbooks), 2 hours (70%)
  • Written essay / case study (3000 words) / presentation in the class (30%)