Cyberlaw, cyber security, AI, and blockchain trends in 2019

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Published: February 19, 2019 6:24 PM

It will be interesting to watch their unfolding and consolidation in the coming months.

The year 2019 is also further likely to see more countries declaring as also amending and modifying their existing National Cyber security strategies.

Cyberlaw is an evolving discipline. It has been evolving for the last more than two decades. However, with the advent of new technologies and with new technological paradigms emerging, cyber law jurisprudence is constantly trying to adapt itself to newly emerging challenges thrown up by newly emerging technologies on the horizon.

It is impossible to be a soothsayer and predict accurately as to what could potentially happen. This is although more so given the rapid pace of these technologies moving in an unprecedented manner. However, based on the developments in the landscape that are arising, it is safe to point out some important cyber law trends that are likely to emerge and further consolidate themselves in the year 2019. Given my work in cyber law, I propose to look at some of the important cyberlaw trends of 2019.

The year 2019 shall be a year that will belong to cyber security regulations. More and more countries will increasingly be inclined to not just implement their existing National Cyber security Laws but also to come up with more detailed cyber security regulatory and legal policy frameworks so as to regulate cyber security related activities in the digital ecosystem.

Different countries have already various drafts of their National Cyber security Laws in various stages of development. The year 2019 should see more nations’ states coming up with dedicated cybersecurity laws to define the roles, duties and responsibilities of various stakeholders in the cybersecurity ecosystem. Further, the increased cybersecurity breaches that are continuing to keep on escalating in the coming year 2019, should also see countries coming up with sectors specific cybersecurity approaches and regulations. Specific cybersecurity guidelines for specific sectors are likely to evolve and emerge in the coming one year.

The year 2019 is also further likely to see more countries declaring as also amending and modifying their existing National Cyber security strategies. For countries who do not have cyber security strategies, there are chances that they would want to come up with their National customized Cyber Security Policies to reflect their national positions on this important issue of our times.

The year 2019 is further likely to see increasing encryption related regulations. More countries are likely to reemphasize the state power by forcing service providers and corporates to share information concerning backdoors and the encryption technologies. The trend that Australia has set up by coming up with its National Anti-Encryption Law is likely to be further built upon by other subsequent legislations in other nations of the world.

The year 2019 is further likely to see expanded growth of work as far as Artificial Intelligence is concerned. Not only Artificial Intelligence will prevail in different aspects of human endeavour and activity, but more significantly, the year 2019 will see more concerted efforts from law makers and policy makers to address the legal and policy issues concerning Artificial Intelligence. The issues pertaining to whether Artificial Intelligence should be considered as an entity and what should be the legal liability of Artificial Intelligence should also see more development.

We are likely to further see enhancement of the industry codes of conducts of Artificial Intelligence developers. This is likely to build up on the voluntary code of conduct that has been agreed by the Artificial Intelligence coders in mid 2018. Further, different States in the United States are likely to come up with amendments to their driverless cars legislations, invoking more responsibility on the car makers to incorporate cyber security as part of their manufacturing processes. Also issues pertaining to legal liability of driverless cars in the event of accidents and deaths, will be another one issue that’s likely to be more explored and elaborated in 2019.

Despite the fluctuations in the pricing of cryptocurrencies, crypto ecosystem is likely to substantially grow further. With the significance of crypto ground realities increasingly dawning upon nation states actors, there are chances that more and more countries would like to come up with enabling regulatory frameworks for the purposes of effectively enabling and regulating crypto assets and crypto currencies.

Various national legislations are likely to further elaborate the enabling legal frameworks to promote Blockchain. With increased adoption and usage of Blockchain in different areas of our lives, there are chances that more enabling legal frameworks and legislations are likely to be passed by nation states to promote the further growth of crypto assets and related business activities. Nations like Belarus and Malta, who already have passed national legislations and legal frameworks for promoting Blockchain, would like to effectively implement the same and would like to build upon their legal works so as to further give a flip to the further growth of the Blockchain ecosystem.

The year 2019 is further likely to see evolving new technologies, new applications and new technological paradigms which are further likely to impact the growth of further evolution of cyber law jurisprudence. I will be discussing more about the same in my next article.

All said and done, cyber jurisprudence is a constantly evolving paradigm. The aforesaid list of cyber law trends is only an illustrative list of some important trends that the author sees on the horizon in the coming times. Many more trends are likely to emerge this year. It will be interesting to watch their unfolding and consolidation in the coming months.

(Views expressed are author’s own. Dr. Pavan Duggal, Advocate, Supreme Court of India, is an internationally renowned expert authority on cyber law and cybersecurity law. He has been acknowledged as one of the top four Cyber lawyers in the world. He is also the Chairman of International Commission on Cyber security Law.)

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