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Cyber Newsletter - March 2023

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By Patrick Hill & Hans Allnutt


Published 23 March 2023


Welcome to the March edition of our Data And Cyber Bulletin which looks at issues including recent successes by law enforcement against a major ransomware group, the continued progression of the Online Safety Bill, data protection issues in Italy and Scotland, and a review of the proposed measures to protect the UK’s smart energy systems.

Firstly, we consider the recent arrests of two major players in the DoppelPaymer (also known as Grief) ransomware group and whether international collaboration and intelligence gathering will be enough to reduce the threat of ransomware groups.

We review recent updates to the progression of the Online Safety Bill, summarising the key updates and what lies ahead. We look at recent GDPR developments in Italy following the ban preventing the Replika AI chatbot app from processing Italian users’ data.  On a similar note, we reflect on a recent case which is one of the few reported decisions of the Courts in Scotland on the interpretation of the UK GDPR.

Finally, we look at the steps that the Government is taking to ensure that smart energy systems will be protected from cyber attack in the future.

Cybercriminals vs law enforcement: Who is winning?
We analyse recent successes by law enforcement against key members of a major ransomware group, and consider whether these international efforts are enough to stop and deter ransomware groups permanently.
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The UK’s Online Safety Bill: What’s next?
We review the busy start to 2023 for the Online Safety Bill, including a look at recent amendments to the draft legislation which have dominated recent press headlines.
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Replika, a ‘virtual friendship’ AI chatbot, receives GDPR ban and threatened fine from Italian regulator over child safety concerns
We examine the recent decision of the Italian Data Protection Authority to issue an order banning the Replika AI chatbot app from processing Italian users’ data amid concerns over child safety.
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Data Protection: Scottish Courts consider interpretation of Schedule 2 of the DPA 2018
We consider the recent decision of Courtney Timothy Riley v The Student Housing Company (ops) Limited, which saw the Scottish Courts being asked to interpret the exemptions to Articles 5(1)(a) and 5(1)(b) of the UK GDPR.
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Look smart: Preventing cyber security risks in a clean energy future
We review how the Government is preparing, from a cyber security perspective, for the transition to increased use of smart energy systems, and the current position of legislation and regulations to ensure this sector is adequately protected.
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We hope you enjoy this month’s edition. Please do contact this month's authors if you have any questions.