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Risk & Compliance
Information Law & TMT
Brexit coverage over the festive period
Additional news—daily and weekly news alerts
Dates for your diary
In-house highlights 2020/2021
LexTalk®In-house: a Lexis®PSL community
MLex: The UK has run out of time to secure an EU ‘adequacy’ decision on personal data flows before a year-end deadline, meaning companies will have to rely on other legal mechanisms. See News Analysis: Insight—UK out of time to win EU data-adequacy decision this year.
The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has published new guidance on keeping data flowing from the EU lawfully from 1 January 2021, together with new guidance on the use of Binding Corporate Rules (BCRs). See: LNB News 22/12/2020 142 and LNB News 17/12/2020 151.
The ICO has also published its Data Sharing Code of Practice and launched a data sharing information hub. See: LNB News 17/12/2020 175.
The ICO is holding a webinar on 14 January 2021 on the new Age Appropriate Design Code (Children’s Code). See: LNB News 22/12/2020 43.
John Gollaglee, partner and David Cook, legal director of the DLA Piper contentious cyber security and data protection team discuss new guidance issued by the ICO on criminal offence data, how the guidance assists in conducting internal investigations into suspected offences, and its practical implications. See News Analysis: Processing ‘criminal offence data’.
The European Data Protection Board (EDPB) has released an information note on data transfers and a separate statement relating to the impact of Brexit. See: LNB News 17/12/2020 156.
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) has released updated Keeling Schedules showing changes to the UK GDPR and Data Protection Act 2018. See: LNB News 21/12/2020 52.
MLex: Facebook Ireland has set aside more than €300m ($US 360m) for possible data protection fines, primarily from the Irish Data Protection Commission (DPC). The social media giant is subject to almost a dozen investigations by the Irish watchdog. See News Analysis: Facebook sets aside €300m for GDPR fines from Irish watchdog.
Financial crime prevention
HM Treasury has published the UK’s third national risk assessment (NRA) of money laundering and terrorist financing (ML/TF). The NRA sets out the key risks for the UK, how these have changed since the UK’s second NRA was published in 2017, and the action taken since 2017 to address these risks. See: LNB News 17/12/2020 76.
The European Commission has published guidance on the implementation of specific provisions of Council Regulation (EU) 2020/1998 concerning restrictive measures against serious human rights violations and abuses. See: LNB News 18/12/2020 113.
The European Banking Authority (EBA) has published its methodology for carrying out risk assessments as part of its new role to lead, co-ordinate and monitor the fight against ML/TF in EU Member States. See: LNB News 17/12/2020 84.
The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has published an update on its report into coronavirus (COVID-19)-related ML/TF risks. See: LNB News 17/12/2020 164.
Law360: The pandemic briefly put criminal trials on hold, but the past year had some big cases that highlighted the need for reform of outdated corporate crime laws, lowered the bar for proving criminal dishonesty and set the scope of new powers to fight the movement of dirty money. See News Analysis: The biggest UK corporate crime cases of 2020.
Law360, London: The Supreme Court on 21 December 2020 rejected the final attempt by the wife of an imprisoned Azeri banker to appeal against the UK’s first use of an unexplained wealth order (UWO) that compels her to reveal the source of her multimillion-pound fortune, ruling that her challenge raised no arguable point of law. See News Analysis: Top court rejects challenge to 1st unexplained wealth order.
Cybersecurity & cybercrime
According to the ICO, SolarWinds was the victim of a cyber-attack where a vulnerability was inserted into its Orion platform. Organisations using the compromised Orion platform could potentially have allowed an attacker to move into other parts of their IT network and systems and breach personal data. The ICO has released information for UK organisations that may have been impacted. See: LNB News 23/12/2020 46.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has published a statement saying it is aware of an ongoing cyber incident affecting the SolarWinds Orion suite of IT management tools. The National Cyber Security Centre has published guidance to firms to help identify if they may be affected. See: LNB News 21/12/2020 87.
Brexit and beyond
The Department for International Trade (DIT) has launched the Check for barriers to trading and investing abroad digital service for UK-based businesses. The DIT and Export Control Joint Unit have also published updated guidance on exporting controlled goods. See: LNB News 22/12/2020 89 and LNB News 21/12/2020 99.
HMRC has published new guidance on reporting goods arriving at a UK port on a commercial vessel and getting clearance to leave a UK port. HMRC has also published updated guidance on when to submit an information sheet for businesses exporting or importing to an EU country using inward or outward processing. See: LNB News 22/12/2020 104 and LNB News 22/12/2020 140.
HMRC has published new guidance on the Northern Ireland Protocol Customs Declaration Service Tariff Guide for imports and exports. It has also updated its guidance with information on completing export declaration for movements of goods starting in Northern Ireland and published new guidance on reporting supplies of goods from Northern Ireland to VAT-registered customers in an EU country using an EC Sales List. See: LNB News 22/12/2020 137, LNB News 22/12/2020 145 and LNB News 18/12/2020 137.
The Office for Product Safety and Standards has published new and updated guidance on designated standards, product safety and metrology. See: LNB News 22/12/2020 102 and LNB News 18/12/2020 134.
Agency and distribution
Stephen Sidkin, partner, and Emma Roake, legal director, at Fox Williams, considers the Commercial Agents (Council Directive) Regulations 1993 (Commercial Agents Regulations 1993) and what changes commercial agents can expect after the end of the Brexit transition period. See News Analysis: The Commercial Agents Regulations 1993 in a post-Brexit world.
Advertising, marketing and sponsorship
The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has published new guidance on the CAP and BCAP Codes. See: LNB News 22/12/2020 100.
The Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) has published updated guidance on marketing standards from 1 January 2021. See: LNB News 21/12/2020 101.
The Financial Reporting Council (FRC) has published amendments to the UK and Republic of Ireland accounting standards from 1 January 2021. The FRC has also issued amendments to the FRS 102 in response to the financial reporting issues arising from interest rate benchmark reform. The amendments are effective for accounting periods beginning on or after 1 January 2021, with early application permitted. See: LNB News 22/12/2020 67.
Accounts and reports
Five leading global reporting standard-setters have published a paper addressing standards for reporting on enterprise value, with a prototype climate-related financial disclosure standard. See: LNB News 18/12/2020 145.
The Quoted Companies Alliance (QCA) has published the results of its latest QCA Small & Mid-Cap Sentiment Index. The survey pointed to optimism among companies, with 62% predicting they will increase jobs in 2021. The companies’ mean turnover growth expectation rose to 13.9%. See: LNB News 17/12/2020 42.
Equity capital markets
The FCA has published policy statement PS20/17, setting out proposals to enhance climate-related disclosures by listed issuers and clarification of existing disclosure obligations, and contains a final rule and guidance promoting better climate-related financial disclosures for UK premium listed commercial companies. See: LNB News 21/12/2020 43.
The EDPB has published a list of pre-EU GDPR BCRs, to provide information on BCRs submitted to supervisory authorities for approval before 25 May 2018 and for which the informal co-operation procedure was closed successfully. See: LNB News 22/12/2020 59.
A coalition of industry federations, including Insurance Europe, BusinessEurope and the European Banking Federation (among others), has published a joint statement raising ‘serious concerns’ about the EDPB’s Recommendations 01/2020 (on measures that supplement transfer tools to ensure compliance with the EU level of protection of personal data) published in the wake of the Court of Justice decision widely known as Schrems II. See: LNB News 21/12/2020 113.
The European Commission has adopted a proposal for a revised Directive on security of network and information systems (NIS 2 Directive) in a bid to address the deficiencies of the previous Network and Information Systems Directive, Directive (EU) 2016/1148. See: LNB News 17/12/2020 73.
The European Commission and the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy have presented a new EU Cybersecurity Strategy. The Strategy is designed to enhance the EU’s collective resilience against cyber threats and help ensure that all citizens and businesses can fully benefit from trustworthy and reliable services and digital tools. See: LNB News 17/12/2020 91.
The DCMS has published a collection of guidance and tools to improve cyber resilience. See: LNB News 22/12/2020 73.
The European Union Agency for Cybersecurity (ENISA) has launched a new consultation on a new draft candidate cybersecurity certification scheme. See: LNB News 23/12/2020 7.
Advocate General (AG) Tanchev opined that the electronic supply of computer software, which was licensed for an unlimited period in return for payment of a fee, constituted the ‘sale’ of ‘goods’ within the meaning Council Directive 86/653/EEC (Commercial Agents Directive). See News Analysis: AG’s opinion—electronically supplied software constitutes ‘sale’ of ‘goods’ under the Commercial Agents Directive (The Software Incubator Ltd v Computer Associates UK Ltd).
The Law Commission of England and Wales and the Scottish Law Commission have made ‘landmark’ proposals seeking to ensure the safety of self-driving vehicles via a new legal framework. See: LNB News 18/12/2020 37.
The House of Lords Liaison Committee has published a follow-up report, ‘AI in the UK: No Room for Complacency’ which considers artificial intelligence and the impact of coronavirus. See: LNB News 21/12/2020 39.
Internet and digital markets
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers has provided initial guidance for domain name systems and domain name system providers on the Digital Services Act package, which was recently published by the European Commission. See: LNB News 17/12/2020 160.
The UK and the EU are set to take bold strides towards the regulation of digital markets in the coming months. While both are broadly aligned in their intention to better regulate large tech companies, the extent to which their post-Brexit regulatory approaches might diverge is yet to be determined. See News Analysis: UK’s Digital Markets Unit and EU’s Digital Markets Act—divergence in the regulation of the largest online platforms?
The DCMS has launched a consultation on the draft procurement strategy for the UK Gigabit Programme. See: LNB News 22/12/2020 108.
The Public Accounts Committee has made a recommendation to HMRC to publish a list of names of employers claiming under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS). See News Analysis: Public Accounts Committee recommends listing employers that claim under the CJRS.
The Chancellor has announced that the furlough scheme is extended until late April 2021. See: LNB News 17/12/2020 187.
Worker status and categories
In Federatie Nederlandse Vakbeweging v Van den Bosch Transporten (C-815/18), the CJEU held that (i) the Posted Workers Directive 96/71/EC applies to the road transport sector and, (ii) to determine whether, under that directive, a worker has been posted to the territory of another Member State, it is necessary to look at whether the performance of their work has a sufficient connection with that territory. See News Analysis: How to determine whether a worker has been posted to another country (Federatie Nederlandse Vakbeweging v Van den Bosch Transporten).
The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has outlined six points of consideration for organisations seeking to implement algorithms in their hiring processes. See: LNB News 21/12/2020 42.
The Government Equalities Office has published new guidance documents to assist employers in meeting the gender pay gap reporting requirements. The guidance explains the requirements, the data which must be collected, how calculations can be made and provides details on adding a supporting narrative. See: LNB News 01/01/0001 2681.
The Minister for Women and Equalities, Liz Truss, has set out in a speech the new approach of the government to tackle inequality across the UK. See: LNB News 17/12/2020 173.
The Home Office has issued an updated version of its ‘Employer’s guide to right to work checks’. See: LNB News 21/12/2020 116.
The Home Office has updated its guidance webpage ‘Coronavirus (COVID-19): advice for UK visa applicants and temporary UK residents’ to confirm that the concession permitting workers and temporary workers to start work (where they have applied for leave before the expiry of their leave and not yet received a decision on the application) will apply until 31 December 2020. Where a Certificate of Sponsorship has been assigned on or after 1 January 2021, ‘you must wait until your visa has been granted before starting work, unless your current visa allows you to work in that job’.See: LNB News 17/12/2020 112.
During the festive period, we will be continuing to bring you the latest Brexit news and updates in our daily Practice Area alerts to ensure you don’t miss a thing as we head towards IP completion day.
For guidance on keeping up to date, including details of how to access the latest Brexit news updates and analysis, see: Brexit transition hub.
This document contains the highlights from the past week’s news. To receive all our news stories, whether on a daily or a weekly basis, amend your personal settings within your ‘News’ tab on the homepage by clicking on either ‘Email’ or ‘RSS’ (depending on how you prefer to receive them) on the right-hand side of the blue banner.
31 December 2020
Dealing with conflicts of interest within your organisation
Recent developments in commercial contracts (2020)
Cloud computing (2020)
Drones law (2020)
Influencers and intellectual property (2020)
(Brief) The Copyright Directive (2020)
Adtech in 2020
The European Electronic Communication Code (2020)
Commercial Law—End of year round-up 2020
Consumer law in 2020
E-commerce in 2020
This is our final Weekly Highlights for 2020. Our first Weekly Highlights of 2021 will be published on 7 January 2021 and mailed to customers on 8 January 2021. For details on how to keep up to date with the latest news on a daily and weekly basis, including Brexit news over the festive period see: ‘Daily and weekly news alerts’ section.
From all of us in the In-house Advisor team, we wish you an enjoyable festive period and a happy new year.
Please follow us on Twitter at @inhouse_leaders. You can also keep updated by reading our blog. If you need an overview of the materials in the in-house module, see: In-house—introduction to our materials.
Virtual networking and forum events
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20 January 2021Brexit. Thriving in a new eraRegister now to attend
In this session we’ll be discussing our thoughts on how to deal with the new world (whatever that may be) after the end of the Brexit transition period. There also be an opportunity to share experiences and helpful insights with your peers under Chatham House rules.Held in partnership with Radius Law and Flex Legal.
27 January 2021Virtual LunchRegister now to attend
A continuation of our series of Virtual Lunches that provide an insight into the legal industry and networking opportunities.Held in partnership with Flex Legal and Crafty Counsel.
24 February 2021IR35, worker status and the end of self-employment?Register now to attend
The planned changes to IR35 are now scheduled to be in force in April 2021 (deferred from April 2020). Join this session to learn how you can safeguard your organisation against significant liabilities and prevent your business from making incorrect and costly decisions.Held in partnership with Radius Law and Flex Legal
24 March 2021The commercial benefit of effective panel managementRegister now to attend
An opportunity to share experiences and helpful insights with your peers under Chatham House rules. This month we focus on effective panel management. Discover how legal teams take a strategic approach to law firm management to demonstrate commercial value to their organisations.Held in partnership with Radius Law and Flex Legal
Various datesLexisNexis® Aspire Forum for Junior In-house LawyersTo register your interest in joining the events, sign up as an Aspire member today
Aspire is a professional development and networking forum for junior in-house counsel. Following the success of the summer event series, we have several events planned for the remainder of the year to continue supporting you through these uncertain times and provide a platform for you to connect with your peers. Events take place at the same time each month, from 5pm to 6.30pm.
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