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Siobhan L.M. Kahmann has extensive experience advising on a range of competition issues, including cartel investigations and leniency applications, complex vertical distribution issues, European and multi-jurisdictional merger control filings, abuse of dominance claims, and competition compliance. Her practise includes providing wide-ranging and detailed advice on digital platforms and e-commerce in a competition context.

On 16 October 2019, the Law Commission of England and Wales – jointly with the Scottish Law Commission – launched a second public consultation on the regulatory framework for Highly Automated Road Passenger Services, or “HARPS”.  “HARPS” is a new term that the Law Commissions have coined for highly automated vehicles that provide road journeys to passengers without a human driver in charge.

The current consultation focuses on whether HARPS operators should be subject to a national licensing scheme, and the conditions that they should meet to obtain a license.  Specifically, the Law Commissions are seeking stakeholders’ views on whether such a scheme should be set up, how the scope of the scheme — and the term “HARPS operator” — should be defined, and the obligations that HARPS operators should be required to meet.


Continue Reading AI/IoT Update: UK Law Commission Launches Second Consultation on Automated Vehicles

Earlier this month, Covington’s Brussels, Frankfurt and London offices hosted a webinar on EU regulatory developments impacting connected and automated vehicles (CAVs). The seminar attracted participants from across the globe, predominantly from tech and automotive industries. This post features an overview of the sections on CO2 pooling, transmission standards: WiFi and 5G, EV chargers and some concluding statements. Part 1 focused on topics around CAVs and data.
Continue Reading AI/IoT Update: Connected and Automated Vehicles Webinar Series: EU Key Developments PART 2

Earlier this month, Covington’s Brussels, Frankfurt and London offices hosted a webinar on EU regulatory developments impacting connected and automated vehicles (CAVs). The seminar attracted participants from across the globe, predominantly from tech and automotive industries. This post features an overview of the introduction, and sections on data access and competition, data protection and cybersecurity. Part 2 will focus on other important CAV areas in the EU.
Continue Reading AI/IoT Update: Connected and Automated Vehicles Webinar Series: EU Key Developments PART 1

On 20 November 2018, the UK government published its response (the “Response”) to the June 2018 consultation (the “Consultation”) regarding the proposed new Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation (“DEI”). First announced in the UK Chancellor’s Autumn 2017 Budget, the DEI will identify measures needed to strengthen the way data and AI are used and regulated, advising on addressing potential gaps in regulation and outlining best practices in the area. The DEI is described as being the first of its kind globally, and represents an opportunity for the UK to take the lead the debate on how data is regulated.
Continue Reading IoT Update: The UK Government’s Response to Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation Consultation

The European Commission (the “Commission”) has launched an Open Public Consultation for building trust in Connected and Automated Mobility (the “CAM Consultation”) on the main challenges linked to the deployment of connected and automated mobility services in Europe and how trust should be built in such services. This CAM Consultation, which largely takes the form of an electronic multiple choice survey, is aimed at gathering input from the general public and relevant stakeholders – such as car manufacturers, connectivity providers, service providers, telecom providers, end-users and public authorities including municipalities, the health community and civil society organisations.

The CAM Consultation follows on from the Commission’s Communication on Connected and Automated Mobility (CAM) (the “Communication”) released in May 2018, which put forward a strategy to make Europe a “world leader in the deployment of connected and automated mobility”. Additional details on the CAM Consultation can be accessed here.
Continue Reading IoT Update: The European Commission consults on building trust in Connected and Automated Mobility

Following an informal consultation earlier this year – as covered by our previous IoT Update here – the UK’s Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (“DCMS”) published the final version of its Code of Practice for Consumer IoT Security (“Code”) on Oct. 14, 2018. This was developed by the DCMS in conjunction with the National Cyber Security Centre, and follows engagement with industry, consumer associations, and academia. The aim of the Code is to provide guidelines on how to achieve a “secure by design” approach, to all organizations involved in developing, manufacturing, and retailing consumer Internet of Things ‘IoT’ products. Each of the thirteen guidelines are marked as primarily applying to one or more of device manufacturers, IoT service providers, mobile application developers and/or retailers categories.

The Code brings together what is widely considered good practice in IoT security. At the moment, participation in the Code is voluntary, but it has the aim of initiating and facilitating security change through the entire supply chain and compliance with applicable data protection laws. The Code is supported by a supplementary mapping document, and an open data JSON file which refers to the other main industry standards, recommendations and guidance.  Ultimately, the Government’s ambition is for appropriate aspects of the Code to become legally enforceable and has commenced a mapping exercise to identify the impact of regulatory intervention and necessary changes.


Continue Reading IoT Update: The UK publishes a final version of its Code of Practice for Consumer IoT Security

On the 10th October 2018, BEREC (the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications) launched its public consultation on the ‘Data Economy’. This comes at a time when different regulators are increasingly discussing the importance of big data, including the opportunities and risks that it brings about, how these may evolve, and how (and increasingly who should take the responsibility) to regulate. While the data protection and competition authorities have so far been most vocal in this deepening regulatory debate, the opening of this consultation represents a clear and decisive move by European telecom regulators to ‘throw their hat’ into the ring and get included in the discussion – and potentially future regulation – of Europe’s data economy.

All interested stakeholders, including public organisations, industry actors, consumers, associations, academics, financial advisers, and other stakeholders with expertise or interest in the data economy are strongly encouraged to have their say. BEREC’s consultation video can be accessed here, and the consultation is open until 21 November 2018.


Continue Reading IoT Update: BEREC launches public consultation on the ‘Data Economy’

The UK Government’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has just released a 75-page Green Paper on Modernising Consumer Markets, setting out the Government’s main priorities for the digital economy in a post-Brexit Britain. The Green Paper reflects on the current state of consumer markets and regulation, and lays down the key challenges and opportunities which will be the focus of the UK’s regulatory and competitive framework going forward. This poses consultation questions to stakeholders on hot topics in digital markets, including questions on: the adequacy of the current competition rules and privacy protections, supporting consumer-friendly innovation, use of and access to big data, whether personalised pricing should be regulated, sufficiently protecting customers without stifling innovation, and alternative dispute resolution solutions.

It also includes various proposals to ensure new technology and data are used to benefit customers, strengthen national enforcement of consumer rights, modernise the approach taken by regulators, and improve consumers’ access to alternative dispute resolution services. In this Covington blog post, we explore some of the key messages and questions posed by the Green Paper.


Continue Reading The UK Government Seeks Views on the Regulation of Digital Markets for a Post-Brexit Great Britain

The UK House of Lords Select Committee on Communications has recently opened a Public Consultation on ‘The Regulation of the Internet’, with submissions being accepted until Friday 11 May. The Call for Evidence can be accessed here.

The nine questions posed are relatively broad in scope, including: whether there is a need to introduce

BEREC, the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications, recently held its 34th public debriefing in Brussels. It confirmed, among other developments, that it has made 5G a strategic European priority for the next 3 years, and has opened a public consultation on the European Net Neutrality Rules – which will run until April 25 2018.

Continue Reading Covington Internet of Things Update: BEREC Confirms European 5G Strategy Priority and Opens Public Consultation on the European Net Neutrality Rules