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Archive for ‘Technology’

Wipe That Drive!

A recent University of Hertfordshire study found that the majority of second-hand hard drives contain previous owner’s data. They purchased 200 used hard drives, and found that 59% still contained data from previous owners.

ZDNet has the details of the findings, and more importantly, 14 ways to wipe them effectively.

Every electronic device has some sort of memory that can potentially contain sensitive, confidential, or personal information. That includes computer hard drives, solid state drives, thumb drives, photocopiers, phones, cars, watches, smart TVs, and the list goes on. Whether we are disposing them, selling them, or returning them, we need . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology, Technology: Office Technology

The Supreme Court of Canada Decisions’ Website Is Evolving

Some of you may have noticed that after over 25 years of being hosted exclusively under the Lexum domain at https://scc-csc.lexum.com, the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) judgments are now also available under the Court’s own domain at https://decisions.scc-csc.ca. On top of the new URL, the database has been graphically integrated with the SCC institutional website, making it easier to navigate between judgments and the rest of the information published online by the court.

Renée Thériault, the Court’s Executive Legal Officer, says “This initiative is part of the Court’s continued efforts to make case-related information more accessible . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Technology: Internet

Time to Review Your Accessibility Plans and Prepare to File a Report in 2020

1. Review your multi-year accessibility plans by January 1, 2020

On January 1, 2014, section 4(1) of the Integrated Accessibility Standards, Ontario Regulation 191/11 under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) required the Government of Ontario, Legislative Assembly, designated public sector organizations and large organizations (50 plus employees) to have multi-year accessibility plans in place and posted on their websites (if any), and to provide the plan in an accessible format upon request.

The multi-year accessibility plan must inform and outline the organization’s strategy for preventing and removing barriers faced by persons with disabilities and also for meeting . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Information Management, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Legal Information: Publishing, Miscellaneous, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Marketing, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology, Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

A Day in the Life of a PBO Hotliner

Prior to Ontario’s most recent provincial election, I didn’t know much about Pro Bono Ontario (“PBO”), a registered charity since 2001 which serves just under 30,000 clients each year from 11 locations. I wasn’t a litigator, and my clients were large corporations, not regular, everyday Canadians, so it wasn’t part of my world. But earlier this year, PBO gave a most impressive presentation to the Legal Innovators Roundtable describing how it was achieving maximum impact with a modest budget through its Free Legal Advice Hotline, using a thoughtful blend of volunteers as well as old and new technology. It sounded . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

CyberSecure Canada Standards for SMEs

The Canadian government has released a Cyber security controls standards document meant for small and medium sized business (499 employees or less), along with a certification program called CyberSecure Canada.

Cyber risks seem to be getting worse. Dangers include external hackers, phishing and social engineering attempts, and intentional and unintentional internal leaks. Responsibility is now considered to be at the board level, and does not stop at the CIO.

Cyber security can be a daunting task for small business. As the standard says, normal security standards “… are expensive to implement, beyond the financial and/or human resources means of most . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Technology

Privacy Rights in the Internet Age and the New Tort of Public Disclosure of Private Facts

“Society has been scrambling to catch up to this problem [the publication of intimate photos or videos online without consent] and the law is beginning to respond to protect victims.” – Justice Stinson in Jane Doe 464533 v N.D., 2017 ONSC 127

Gradually courts have been awarding damages for the tort of public disclosure of private information. The tort of public disclosure of private information consists of the following elements: (a) the defendant publicized an aspect of the plaintiff’s private life; (b) the plaintiff did not consent to the publication; (c) its publication would be highly offensive to a . . . [more]

Posted in: Case Comment, Technology

ICAIL 2019 In Review

The International Association for Artificial Intelligence and Law (IAAIL) is a non-profit organization that has organized academic conferences on artificial intelligence and law every two years, since 1987.

The most recent International Conference on AI and Law (ICAIL) was held this June in Montréal, QC, hosted by the CyberJustice Lab at the University of Montréal Faculty of Law. I had the opportunity to attend, presenting the results of my work as part of the ABA Innovation Fellowship program in 2018/2019, which was sponsored by Canadian legal practice management software company, Clio.

The conference is an academic event. . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

Court Forms: Should Most Forms Be Eliminated?

 

Court forms are confusing. They are difficult to fill in and contain legal jargon. Even worst, the guides for court forms can be hard to follow. Especially, if you do not have a strong grasp of English or an understanding of the court system.

I have personally witnessed numerous people struggle with court forms, both while waiting to file a court document and while volunteering at a legal clinic. In the article “Literacy Requirements of Court Documents: An Underexplored Barrier to Access to Justice“, Professor Amy Salzyn, et al., write about the difficulties in navigating court forms. . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

Your Information Has Already Been Compromised

Your personal information has already been compromised. Your business may already be infected.

There have been so many breaches of user ID’s over the years that it is almost certain there is a login/password combination for almost everyone somewhere on the dark web.

One of the striking revelations of many breaches is how long the bad actor has been lurking in a system before being discovered – sometimes months.

Almost everything we do is digital, and most of it is in the cloud. It can be catastrophic if it fails or is compromised.

Cybersecurity is becoming increasingly important for businesses . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

Third Party Funding of Litigation: Can Artificial Intelligence Help?

Recently Alan Freeman wrote about the use of artificial intelligence in third party funding of litigation, in his article “Intelligent Funding: Could AI Drive the Future of Litigation Finance”. Litigation funding, also known as third party funding, provides financing to plaintiffs and law firms to enable them to pursue their claims in return for a piece of the recovery.

For a court to approve a third party funding agreement, the party must show that (a) the agreement is necessary to provide access to justice, (b) that access to justice is facilitated by the third party funding agreement in . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

Prescribing Technology by Law

Lately we discussed on this blog U.S. legislation appearing to validate contracts or signatures done by blockchain, by saying that ‘electronic record’ and ‘electronic signature’ under the states’ e-transactions legislation included blockchain. There was considerable thought that this was not necessary, that the conclusion was obvious (or badly wrong, if there could be a non-electronic blockchain).

Apparently this kind of legislation has been around for a long time. Here is a note (h/t Ian Kyer) about Pennsylvania legislation in the 1890s saying that typewriting was writing for all legal purposes. Could this have been previously in doubt, given that printed . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology, ulc_ecomm_list

My Horse for a Civilization: Regulating Carbon Emissions and Emergence of Climate Change Law

A century ago, Western civilization was still extensively using domesticated animals, specifically the horse, as one of the main means of transportation. Though domesticated for at least 6,000 years, this animal provided an invaluable means for people, goods, and services to move throughout North America, especially in inland areas away from shipping routes.

As could be expected, the common law at the time contained ample number of decisions that related to horses or incidents connected to horses. The horse was a central piece of technology that enabled civilization. Of course, all of that changed with the introduction of the Model . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Technology