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Computers and the Law.

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Introduction

COMPUTERS and the LAW Software Copyright It is illegal under the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1989 to copy software in breach of a licensing agreement. Licensing Agreements When buying software, you do not become the owner of the software itself - you are buying a license that permits you to use the software. There are a variety of different licensing agreements:- * Single-user license - this covers the use of software by one person. The individual is usually permitted to copy the software once, so that they have a backup. Also, they may be able to use the software on two different machines, say a home PC and a portable laptop, as long as both copies aren't used at the same time! * Multi-user license - this covers the use of software by several people and is the kind of license bought by small to medium-sized organisations where, typically, five to twenty people may be using the software. ...read more.

Middle

to prevent of hinder access to any program or data iii) to impair the operation of any program or reliability of any data. Prosecutions under the Computer Misuse Act must always show intent. The court must show that the accused knew what they were doing. Incompetence is a defence against a prosecution under the Computer Misuse Act. Also many potential prosecutions are blocked by the victims, the organisations whose security systems are breached, because they wish to avoid the bad publicity. The Data Protection Act 1998 Designed to protect the individual and to discourage the dissemination of personal information which identifies individuals. Definitions under the act Personal data - data that concerns a living person who can be identified from the data. Data subject - the individual who is the subject of the personal data. Data user - the company of organisation who use the data. Data controller - the person/persons within a company/organisation who are responsible for controlling the way that the personal data is processed. ...read more.

Conclusion

If inaccurate data has caused them damage, they may claim compensation through the courts. * The data controller having to state the purpose of collecting the data and to whom it is disclosed. Seventh principle - states that "appropriate technical and organisational measures shall be taken against unauthorised or unlawful processing of personal data and against accidental loss or destruction of, or damage to, personal data". In other words, the data must be kept secure. Eight principle - says that data must not be transferred to a country or territory outside the European Economic Area, unless that country or territory has similar protections, rights and freedoms of data subjects. Exemptions from the DPA 1998 Personal data is exempt from the act if the data is involved in:- * the prevention or detection of crime, * the apprehension or prosecution of offenders, * the assessment or collection of any tax or duty (including payroll, pensions, accounts), * issues related to national security, * personal, family, household or recreational use. ...read more.

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