In line with the decision of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers at the end of 2009 to allow domain names to be registered in Arabic, Chinese and other non-Latin scripts (internationalized domain names (IDNs)), 16 applications have been filed for country-level IDNs. Accordingly, the launch of Arabic-language IDNs, including '.امارات' ('.emarat'), appears imminent.
August 2009 marked one year since the '.ae' Domain Administration (.aeDA) registry system went live. This update provides some background to the .aeDA, along with information relating to '.ae' domain name eligibility. It also looks at the '.ae' dispute resolution policy and briefly contrasts this with domain name dispute procedures in other Gulf Cooperation Council countries.
In today's market contract negotiations are often conducted by electronic means (eg, by email) and the negotiations continue until the differences are narrowed down to an electronic contract. The relevant question is whether such an electronic contract is valid under the current UAE law.
In February 2006 the UAE government issued the federal Electronic Transactions and Commerce Law. Now, in an attempt to bring existing laws into line with that law, amendments have been made to the Law of Evidence in Civil and Commercial Transactions, giving electronic documents and signatures the same weight as the paper equivalents.
The year 2006 witnessed major legislative developments initiated by new ministers keen to protect the ever-growing e-commerce sector by introducing two new laws regulating electronic transactions and cybercrime. The new Electronic Transactions and Commerce Law regulates electronic records, documents and signatures used for electronic transactions and e-commerce.
The UAE government has committed itself to facilitating e-commerce at both local and federal level. As part of the federal government's efforts to regulate electronic transactions and boost users' confidence, in February 2006 the Federal Law Concerning Electronic Transactions and Commerce Law was issued.
The Ministry of Justice, Islamic Affairs and Awqaf is considering a draft law on cybercrime in the light of the continuing increase in threats to internet security in 2004. The proposed law is expected to cover, among other issues, hacking, computer fraud and data theft.
A common bone of contention in the online business world is website ownership. Usually, companies pay someone to build their website or portal and believe that they can then start doing business. However, payment for the construction of a website is not necessarily sufficient to establish ownership.
Key members of the UAE judiciary have attended roundtable discussions on the implications of copyright legislation in relation to software piracy, in order to reflect the region's commitment to the protection of IP rights.
The Dubai Department of Justice is preparing to launch its new 'e-gateway' online service, which will make more than 300 legal articles and 5,000 principal and landmark rulings available to the public and law professionals at the click of a mouse.
Including: Background; Legislative Developments; Comment.
The Dubai Court of Cassation has upheld a Dubai Court of Appeal ruling against an individual accused of hacking into Etisalat's computer network, confirming a Dh10,000 fine. Government owned Etisalat is the sole telecommunications service provider in the United Arab Emirates.
UAE law fails to address many issues facing employers in today's working environment, including whether (and if so how) employee use of internet and email facilities may be monitored. However, the introduction of a comprehensive policy on computer use in the workplace should help employers to avoid claims for violations of an employee's privacy.
By establishing the legal framework for electronic transactions, the Dubai government is protecting the interests of companies throughout the world, encouraging them to do business in Dubai. It is hoped that additional regulations will be implemented soon to cover other aspects of online activities.
Although many companies are establishing an online presence, few are giving any serious regard to the relevant legal implications. Generally, companies decide to include terms and conditions on a website as part of its layout rather than as legal protection. Is a customer bound by a website's terms and conditions merely by clicking on an 'I accept' or 'I agree' button?
The e-commerce revolution presents many challenges to the United Arab Emirates since no specific e-commerce legislation yet exists. Legislation is required for issues such as contract acceptance and data protection.
Dubai Internet City is an ambitious project to create the world's first free trade zone for e-business. The key factors are outlined in this update, along with the prospects for success.
When trading online, the same business issues and risks that apply to managing an offline business should be borne in mind. Consideration should be given to issues including location, sub-contracts, trading terms and conditions, taxation and insurance.
Including: Economic Context; E-Government; E-Business; Principles of Contracting; International Perspective; Online Crime; Law Enforcement; and Data Interception
The recent conviction of an internet hacker who accessed the UAE's telecommunications provider's internet service, has emphasized the need to create legislation to deal with problems arising from the use and abuse of the World Wide Web.