Technology and Innovation

Technological innovation is transforming businesses, markets and our everyday life. Appleby’s multi-disciplinary global technology and innovation group comprises experts from our offices in Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Guernsey, Hong Kong, Isle of Man, Jersey, Mauritius, the Seychelles and Shanghai, to help businesses meet the new challenges and support clients across a broad range of emerging technologies, including:

Blockchain

Blockchain, the technology behind virtual currencies is now growing in other areas of financial services and beyond. These opportunities introduce new risks and give rise to new legal, governance and regulatory issues which require careful consideration before the technology’s full potential can be realised. Our specialists are experienced in helping you meet these challenges.

Virtual Currencies, Token Sales and Initial Coin Offerings

Cryptocurrency success has led to an explosion of new currency trading platforms and exchanges using blockchain, the establishment of cryptocurrency investment funds and “initial coin offerings” which allow technology start-ups to bypass traditional and highly regulated capital-raising processes by creating and exchanging new tokens for Bitcoin or legal tender. We help clients looking to establish technically complex platforms which push the boundaries of current methods.

Financial Technologies 

Financial technologies or “FinTech” have the potential to supplement or disrupt the financial services industry, with internet banking and mobile payment applications as obvious early examples. As offshore centres press forward with ambitions to be leading regional technology hubs, FinTech will soon become an important point of focus, both for market participants and for regulators.

Our experts understand the opportunities these technologies offer and help navigate the regulatory complexities they bring with them.

Digital Technology and E-Commerce

From wearable devices that measure and record health information to mobile, online and in-app payments, the digital technology landscape is changing daily.

Our varied expertise combined with technology sector knowledge enables us to give you practical and commercial advice at every stage of the development of your business. We help with regulatory compliance, the establishment of new entities and compliance with local laws, along with a range of digital technology issues including:

  • Website development, terms and conditions and policies;
  • Corporate and commercial transactions
  • Dispute resolution and litigation;
  • Content acquisition and licensing;
  • Advertising and promotional activities including copy clearance;
  • Funding and finance;
  • Big data and data analytics;
  • Cloud services;
  • The Internet of things and machine-to-machine technologies;
  • Mobile, online and in-app payments; and
  • Wearable technology

Intellectual Property

Intellectual property is one of the most valuable assets a business can own: protecting it is essential to commercial success. Appleby works with you to register and protect your rights. In conjunction with our Commercial Litigation group, Appleby has substantial experience in taking action to protect against the infringement of IP rights and in the conduct of passing-off actions. We also offer investigative services to identify the source of, and distributors of, infringing goods, working closely with the relevant bodies as necessary.

Unmanned Aircraft Systems

The increasingly popular use of UAS (or, more popularly, “drones”) for aerial photography and surveillance has created a number of regulatory and privacy challenges. UAS present unique privacy challenges and their ability to collect data with great resolution and granularity at distant vantage points, often for long periods, enables them to conduct effective aerial surveillance in a sustained and surreptitious manner. This has led to the use of UAS for commercial purposes requiring a licence or other form of registration in certain jurisdictions. Our experts understand the opportunities UAS offer and help navigate the regulatory complexities.

IT and Communications

IT and telecommunications services are business critical and have an enormous impact on society. We cover all legal aspects of the telecoms sector and its convergence with adjacent technology and media sectors. Our experience extends across all types of network and platform - fixed, mobile, satellite, VPN, terrestrial broadcasting, cable TV and the internet.

Data Protection and Information Management

There are now data protection laws in more than 90 countries around the world. These, together with cyber security concerns and new international data sharing regimes such as FATCA are making the regulation of data more complex than ever before.

We offer advice to clients on all aspects of data protection and information management compliance, including:

  • Privacy impact assessments, to enable an organisation to assess privacy impacts due to proposals for organisational, technological or policy change;
  • Data centres; covering developers, operators and end-users.
  • Data collection and capture, including policies concerning the mechanics of collecting consents;
  • Direct marketing and the implementation of “opt-in”/”opt-out” requests;
  • Structuring cross-border data transfers including as part of shared services and cloud arrangements;
  • Human resources management, including policies dealing with job applicant data, retention of and access to employee files, employee monitoring, management of sensitive employee data and the use of external vendors for functions such as payroll and counselling;
  • Data subject access, including procedures for assessing and verifying requests and responding to those requests;
  • Big data and data analytics, including policies specifying the types of profiling data that may be used, and anonymisation/aggregation principles;
  • Digital identity, authentication and biometrics;
  • Responding to data requests from foreign authorities, law enforcement agencies and regulators;
  • Complaints handling, including complaints from customers, employees and other affected individuals; and
  • Data quality management, including procedures for updating and correcting databases and determining if data is to be erased.