Penrose has a team of lawyers that specialise in Information Technology in the Netherlands. To contact our Dutch legal team, click here.
More and more business processes are being automated and outsourced. This involves storing (business-sensitive) information in the cloud, software being purchased as a service (SaaS), and innovative algorithms that analyse the personal data of visitors to the website.
Agreements with IT suppliers or developers are key to guaranteeing the quality and continuity of your business processes and (business sensitive) information. How is the hosting arranged? Who owns the copyright or other intellectual property rights if the software is developed in a cooperation agreement? Can our organization still access the data after the agreement expires? Is the IT supplier liable if the agreed delivery dates are not met?
Privacy and security
As part of the outsourcing of IT and business processes, the supplier often also processes personal data and/or business-sensitive information. This could include, for example, the outsourced payroll administration or the hosting of the overall IT environment.
Developments in the field of digitization and technology also result in new vulnerabilities (e.g. through hacking, phishing and other forms of cyber crime). Due to the increasingly strict privacy laws and regulations, as well as the growing risks in this respect (such as identity fraud), it is becoming more and more important to make sound agreements with IT suppliers and take sufficient measures in the area of privacy and information security.
Blockchain: a relatively new phenomenon since the introduction of the World Wide Web that many expect to change the world permanently. A blockchain is a kind of digital ledger, which is created by sequentially processing transactions digitally and including them in blocks. This goes even further if the transactions concerned take place independently because they are pre-programmed in smart contracts.
Blockchain and smart contracts are developing rapidly, but because for many this remains unknown territory, Dutch law issues such as privacy and IP are becoming even more complex.
Software, copyright and patents
IT often involves the development of software. It is possible that your company develops software itself and makes it available to customers as a service. Another possibility is that your company or organisation buys certain software from a third party.
In the Netherlands, the software, and, in particular, the source code, are protected by Dutch copyright if they are sufficiently original. The functionality, programming language and underlying ideas of a computer program are not protected by copyright. In some cases, protection by means of a patent is also possible in the Netherlands.
Data, IoT and AI (Artificial Intelligence)
Developments in the field of digitization and technology follow on from each other in rapid succession. Sensors are used to connect all kinds of applications and equipment via the internet and to generate enormous amounts of data (nowadays also called big data). These technologies are use to make our phones, houses, cars, refrigerators and even cities ‘smart’. This innovative development is also known as the Internet of Things (IoT). If analyses are then performed on the basis of artificial intelligence (such as machine learning), the data can be used to identify connections, and patterns and existing algorithms can be improved. Privacy is a recurring theme in this context. In the Netherlands, the main privacy rules for IT is the GDPR.
Dutch IT law specialists
Penrose specialises in Information Technology law. Our specialists can assist IT entrepreneurs, suppliers and users of IT services. We draft Dutch legal documentation for scale-up and start-up companies about the various matters in the IT domain, such as SaaS agreements and license agreements. To contact our Dutch specialists, click here.