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Archive for ‘Technology’

Microsoft Support for Windows 7 Ends Jan 2020

The issue

Microsoft supports its operating systems for only a fixed period of time after that version is replaced. For Windows 7 support ends in January 2020.

Why does it matter?

Microsoft will no longer provide bug fixes or security updates. And no longer provide technical support. Continuing to use Windows 7 after that date thus carries a higher risk of security problems and software incompatibility problems. About 40% of PC’s still use Windows 7, so a lot of computers need to be updated.

What do you need to do about it?

January 2020 sounds like it is a . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Office Technology

Privacy Guidelines for Managing Emails

The Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Alberta has published guidelines on how to manage emails to minimize organizational risks and expenses that could be caused by a privacy breach. The guidelines indicate that “In light of the vast quantities of email sent and received daily by an organization, email management is not just a records management issue, but is also a necessary business process” that should be managed in accordance with records management principles and the requirements of Alberta’s access to information and privacy legislation. Although the guidance provided in this document is directed at managing emails, . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Marketing, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology, Technology: Office Technology

Bug Bounties

Are you looking for a side hustle to do something interesting and make a few dollars? Consider being an ethical hacker working for bug bounties. Many tech companies have formal programs that reward people for reporting bugs in their systems, such as security problems.

Bug bounty programs have proven valuable to businesses that create software or that have an online presence. Businesses have offered these programs for decades.

Some people make a few dollars when they stumble on a problem. Many actively and methodically search for problems, such as a 19 year old from Argentina who has made millions of . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

Using Artificial Intelligence for Demeanour Evidence

Demeanour evidence holds a controversial role in evidence law. Centuries of common law have allowed trial judges to assess the behaviour, conduct, and mannerisms to make findings of credibility. Often these findings can be useful to judges, especially when the only evidence available on crucial determinations of fact is viva voce testimony from each side.

In “Relying on Demeanour Evidence to Assess Credibility during Trial – A Critical Examination,” Amna Qureshi provides some background on the use of demeanour evidence,

The fact that trial judges can and do assess credibility based on demeanour during trial has also been

. . . [more]
Posted in: Justice Issues, Technology

The Road to Automated & Connected Cars Is Not a Straight One

It seems that everyone is doing studies or adopting positions on automated/connected cars these days. That is understandable given the potential ramifications on subjects including safety, ability to function in adverse weather, infrastructure, traffic, public transit, cybersecurity, data volumes, privacy, liability, insurance, ethics, and jobs.

Level 5 (fully autonomous) self driving cars may not arrive for many years. Depending on who you ask, they are somewhere between a couple of years and a couple of decades away. Level 2 (cars with some driver assist tech like automatic emergency braking and adaptive cruise control) cars are common today.

Transport Canada has . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Technology

No Bitcoin Fund in Ontario, Says OSC

Last month the Ontario Securities Commission refused to approve a prospectus for a fund that proposed to invest in bitcoin. The investment did not have enough liquidity, i.e. investors could not be certain enough that they could sell their investment when they wanted to. A summary is here.

The OSC also had concerns about the valuation of bitcoin (surprise!) and its safekeeping. Given the number of thefts of cryptocurrency in recent years, and the Quadriga mess, the latter concern may be justified as well.

What do you think? Is the OSC just doing its job, or is it not . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Technology, ulc_ecomm_list

Employer and Employee Disagree About Right to Disconnect

In France, the right to disconnect was made law on January 1, 2017, “requiring employers to have clear policies in place regarding when employees engage in workplace communication outside of the office and when on vacation.” This law is because of a French Supreme Court Case in 2001 that “held that “the employee is under no obligation either to accept working at home or to bring there his files and working tools”. In 2004, this principle was confirmed again by the French Supreme Court which added in this case, “the fact that [the employee] was not reachable on his cell . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology, Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

Continued Consultations on Possible Complex Canada Labour Code Changes

Important changes to the Canada Labour Code were recently made (i.e., Bill C-63 and C-86, among others), but the government’s work to modernize the Canada Labour Code isn’t done yet. On February 20, 2019, the federal government convened an independent expert panel to provide advice on five complex workplace issues facing Canadian employers and employees due to the changing nature of work. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology, Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Law

The 17th International Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Law will take place in Montreal, Quebec this year June 17-21. Aptly the venue will be the Cyberjustice Laboratory at the Université de Montréal. This is a biennial conference organized by members of the International Association for Artificial Intelligence and Law.

The Cyberjustice Lab is international in scope and pursues a multidisciplinary approach, assembling “stakeholders, legal professionals, public actors and academics to rethink the justice system and both overcome its modern challenges as well as improve access to justice.” They investigate with a view that “technology, and especially AI, . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet

Wage Rate Sheet for Fellow Employees’ Personal Information Protected Under Alberta’s PIPA

A recent Alberta privacy case, P2019-ND-006 (in PDF), deals with a breach of salary information about identifiable individuals under the Personal Information Protection Act(PIPA). The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Alberta found that “A reasonable person would consider that the identity and salary information could be used to cause the significant harms of hurt, humiliation and embarrassment, particularly if shared with individuals who have a personal or professional relationship with the affected individuals.”

What happened?

. . . [more]
Posted in: Case Comment, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology, Technology: Office Technology

When Is Software Regulated as a Medical Device?

Fitness software for phones, watches and other wearable devices is common. So when does software cross a line and need to comply with medical device legislation?  

Medical devices used for health purposes are regulated and must meet certain standards or approvals depending on a risk profile. In Canada medical devices are rated from class 1 through 4, class 4 requiring the most scrutiny. 

Health Canada recently published draft guidelines on when software has a medical purpose that requires it to follow the medical device standards.  

For example: 

Software intended for maintaining or encouraging a healthy lifestyle, such as general wellness . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology

Creating the AI in Our Own Image

Human being, as a self-absorbed species, tend to perceive ourselves as the most superior organism on the planet. The apex predator among apex predators.

This trope is is found throughout our popular culture, and often explains our relationship with other animals and the environment around us. The notion of dominance can even be found in the Bible, with humans being created in the image of the creator, specifically so that they could rule (רְדּוּ֩) over the world (Gen 1:26). In contrast, many Indigenous cultures to North America perceive a more harmonious and interdependent relationship with the others around us.

The . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology