Legal Aspects of Information Technology

Legal Aspects of Information Technology

Basic legal issues IT managers and software developers need to know about Information Technology and Law

25 October 2005 (14-21)
Location: Sofitel Diegem (Diegem near Brussels (Belgium))
Presented in English by
Price: 480 EUR (excl. 21% VAT)

This event is history, please check out the List of Upcoming Seminars, or send us an email

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 Learning Objectives

Why this seminar?

IT decision makers frequently have to deal with legal aspects of IT. Companies have to lay down the quality of IT services and products they purchase or deliver into legally binding contracts.

IT as a tool for internal use is neither free from legal pitfalls: not everything that is technically feasible, is consistent with general-purpose legislation (e.g. privacy-issues) and a lot of IT and software applications are subject to specific laws (e.g. the electronic signature).

IT managers should primarily be experts in their own field, but they should also be aware of the legal aspects of IT usage and the do's and don'ts while drafting IT contracts.

This is why we invited two lawyers who will present lessons from their years of practical experience in legal IT advice during a one-day seminar, tailor-made for IT decision makers. They will try to answer most, if not all of your questions on the legal aspects of IT.

Who should attend this seminar ?

  • If you are dealing with contracts with other parties: outsourcing, software development, service contracts, ...
  • If you are involved in decision-making about e-mail policies, HR applications, storage and security of (personal) data.
  • If you are responsible for software development and you have questions on intellectual property issues.

Please do not hesitate to send further questions to

 Full Programme

Registration with Coffee/Tea and Croissants
Legal aspects of IT
(Patrick Van Eecke, DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary )


  • What personal data (of clients, employees...) can be stored? Under what conditions?
  • Can employee surfing behavior or email content be monitored or filtered? Can surfing behavior on external websites be individualised and stored?


  • Can I use whatever encryption I like?
  • How are security breaches (hacking, access without permission, data theft...) defined by law?
  • Can a company be liable for security breaches (such as liability for damage caused by third parties due to a negligent protection of its customer/supplier/employee data)?
  • Can a company be liable for illegal activities running from the company network?
  • What about liability when IT security has been outsourced?
A closer look at IT contracts
(Kristof De Vulder, DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary)

General Overview

  • What types of contracts an IT manager has to deal with?
  • Which legal framework regulates these contracts?
  • Is there any specific legislation on software, hardware and IT services ?

Software licensing and development

  • What are the typical rights and obligations for both licensor and licensee? Which provisions does a licensing contract explicitly need to contain (on e.g. proper usage or transferability)?
  • What are the do's and don'ts for contracts on custom-made software?
  • Are there any template contracts for the software delivery cycle (specifications, acceptance, maintenance...)?
  • Escrow: trusting software source code to a third party.
  • Confidentiality: how do I ensure that a software developer will not reveal his knowledge of my business process to competitors?


  • Service Level Agreements: how to make sure that the Quality of Service is legally enforceable?
  • Is there such a thing as Quality of Service in consulting?
  • Who is responsible when a service provider on its turn outsources part of the service?
  • What are the essential elements in pricing and invoicing clauses?
  • Under what conditions can a contract be unilaterally terminated?
Legal aspects of IT (Patrick Van Eecke, DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary )

Texts and documents

  • e-Archiving: what is the legal value of electronic (archive) copies of documents?
  • e-Contracting: what legal value does an electronic contract have? And what about a contract between parties with a different legal system (e.g. cross-border) ?
  • e-Signatures: can an electronic signature replace a handwritten signature? What's the role of the electronic identity card (eID)?
  • Can information published on the company website be used against that company? How can the company safeguard itself against this?
  • What are the legal do's and don'ts concerning direct marketing by email? And by means of sms?

Intellectual property

  • Is a company entitled to all the intellectual property rights on all the documents and software written by employees using company infrastructure?
  • How can a software company safeguard itself against piracy?
  • Can I take legal action against domain names that are referring to my company or product names?
End of this seminar


Patrick Van Eecke (DLA Piper)
DLA Piper

Patrick Van Eecke, Lic.Iur., LL.M., is a lawyer and leads the e-business department of the international law firm DLA Piper, which has 4200 lawyers in 30 countries and more than 60 offices.

Patrick Van Eecke is recommended by the Legal 500 and the European Legal Experts as one of the top lawyers in ICT law in Belgium. He is ranked as 1st Belgian lawyer in the "Guide to the World's Leading Technology, Media & Telecommunications Lawyers" and is also in the world's Top 20.

In 2000-2001, Patrick was a research fellow at the Law School of Stanford University, California, and he wrote his PhD on the legal aspects of the digital signature. He is extensively involved in various research and consulting projects for the European Commission and several national governments. Until June 1999, he was advisor to the Minister of Justice on the legal aspects of the information society and he was involved in the implementation of electronic signature-related legislation, computer criminality, and eavesdropping on electronic communication.

Patrick Van Eecke is the author of several legal articles and books on computer crime, electronic signatures, electronic contracting and privacy. Patrick is editor of the Belgian Revue de Droit Commercial (Larcier), the international Journal of Internet Law (Kluwer), the Belgian-Dutch Computerrecht (Kluwer) and the British Computer Law and Security Review (Elsevier). His most recent book "Recht & elektronische handel" was published by Larcier.

Patrick is a regular speaker at national and international conferences, he is often asked to comment on Internet law-related issues in national and international press, e.g. very recently in The Guardian on the Safe Harbour Agreement. He is also a columnist in the Belgian quality newspaper De Standaard about law and e-business.

Patrick is a professor at the University of Antwerp, teaching European Information and Communications Law. He is also a guest lecturer on Internet law at various universities, such as Solvay Business Institute, Kings College London and Queen Mary University of London (LL.M. Information Technology Law).

Patrick is member of the Brussels bar (since 1994) and is an associate member of the American Bar Association.

Kristof De Vulder (DLA Piper)

Kristof De VulderKristof De Vulder is a senior associate of the DLA Piper office in Brussels practicing in the fields of IT and telecommunications law.

Kristof has gained experience in the following domains: IT-contracting, Telecom contracts, service level agreements (SLA) and Public procurement law.

Since 1996, Kristof De Vulder has been a scientific collaborator of the 'Centrum voor Jurist en Informatica' of the University of Ghent. Since 1998, he has also been a scientific collaborator of TRD&I, a Belgian specialized law journal for which he is responsible for telecommunication law and information law. Furthermore, he is an active member of the editorial board of several legal journals including 'Nieuw Juridisch Weekblad'.

Kristof De Vulder is also a regular speaker at conferences, seminars, and colloquia, covering mostly IT law, in general, and outsourcing and SLAs, in particular. He also regularly publishes books and articles on ICT law topics in Belgian legal journals and ICT journals.

Questions about this ? Interested but you can't attend ? Send us an email !