IoT and AI: Legal issues to consider

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Fiona Makaka, Associate TMT, TripleOK speaking during the IoT and AI Summit at Crowne Plaza Hotel

Technology maturity in Kenya and the world as a whole is changing at a rapid rate, it is practically becoming a cliché, loop innovations around it and policies and laws can’t just seem to play catch up.

According to Fiona Makaka, Associate TMT, TripleOK Law during a presentation at the IoT and AI Summit at Crowne Plaza Hotel in Kenya, “since inception in 2002 in Kenya the firm has actively created synergies with key players in the technology sector addressing issues of cybersecurity and data protection.”

She further looked at four main legal issues causing an uproar in IoT and AI and how to deal with them:

Causation and Liability

Robots have no legal personality and therefore cannot take up liability. Legal claims are based on assignment of blame. Regulators have a role to play e.g certification agencies. As a company/organisation i.e. customer you have to outline a clear responsibility matrix in contracts with service provider.

Legislative gaps

Regulation has always played catch up with innovation. Legislative gaps often works against innovators e.g cryptocurrency.  You need to ensure you have a letter of no objection, notify the relevant regulator, adoption of Best Practice.

Data Privacy

Adoption of AI and IOT involves customer data analytics.

“While there are no privacy laws in Kenya, GDPR is best practice due to its extraterritorial reach. Data Protection Bill Kenya is yet to be enacted as law but heavily borrows from GDPR,” Fiona added.

You should ensure you review terms and conditions, internal privacy policy, inclusion of data protection clause in contracts

Contract negotiations (in the process of using third party intergrators, partnering)

Contracts involving : Data Ownership, Intellectual Property, Exit Strategies, Audit Rights, Deliverables. She stated in cases like these you need to engage with a lawyer.

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