Julian Hayes

The UK’s National Data Strategy – Too Much Love?

“We want the UK….to be the best place in the world to start and grow a digital business”. With this ambitious aim, the Government has laid out its National Data Strategy, focusing on unlocking the value of data, establishing a pro-growth data protection regime, and championing international data flows to promote economic development. Already a feted success, the UK’s digital sector now stands behind only the US and China in global venture capital funding and directly employs more than 1.5 million people in London and other major UK cities. Despite its laudable aspiration, however, the Data Strategy signals post-Brexit regulatory intentions which risk inhibiting and choking off the future growth of this successful UK industrial sector.

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BCL Solicitors LLP recognised as a leading firm in The Legal 500 UK 2020-2021 Guide

BCL Solicitors LLP are pleased to be once again recognised as a top-tier firm with an extensive team of outstanding individuals in the new Legal 500 United Kingdom 2020-2021 Guide with a total of seven leading practice areas identified and 14 lawyers commended for their standout contribution in their respective practices.

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Double extortion – an emerging trend in ransomware attacks

Some cyber-attacks, like the Twitter hack in July 2020, make headlines because of the A-list celebrity victims involved. Some, like the Yahoo breach first disclosed in 2013 are high profile because of the staggering number of individuals whose personal data is jeopardised. Many, however, fail to reach the general public’s consciousness because, sadly, data breaches are now so commonplace. Globally, the number of publicly disclosed attacks rose by 273% in Q1 of 2020 compared with the same period last year. Occasionally, though, an attack captures the media’s attention because of the identity of victim, for example, the recent data breach which has shaken the reputation of the Ritz hotel in London.

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The GDPR’s Second Birthday: Three Cheers But No Presents

The GDPR has just celebrated its second birthday and, to mark the occasion, the European Commission (‘EC’) has published an assessment of its effectiveness so far. While praising the ground-breaking data protection leviathan for what it has achieved to date, the EC has admitted that more needs to be done, particularly in the field of enforcement, if it is to create a genuinely level playing field for personal data rights across Europe and beyond.

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CMA: Pandemic Profiteering – take aim then hesitate

The initial shockwaves of the COVID-19 pandemic, declared in March, prompted authorities across Europe and in America to take urgent steps to protect consumers. Such measures included cracking down on anti-competitive behaviour and temporarily relaxing rules which might otherwise be detrimental to the public interest. Two months on, as countries around the world cautiously ease ‘lockdown’ measures, disturbing stories continue to emerge of competition law abuse, including profiteering on essential products, highlighting significant gaps in existing regulatory powers. While some countries have introduced tough temporary powers, the UK now seems to be hesitating.

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