Between Innovation and Security – Digital Working in the Legal Sector

The summer ends on a heavy note. On 29 August, the biennial conference Computer Science and Law will take place at Bern City Hall. BFH Wirtschaft has been a co-organiser since 2014. We are looking forward to it!

What is moving us in the legal sector today? On the one hand, there is the big topic of artificial intelligence (AI). As specialised AI, it can prepare decisions, identify suspicious voice fluctuations, supplement visual information for human perception – and much more. Is this allowed in court? Is this allowed to be used by HR for recruiting and evaluating employees?

Or more generally: How can we use AI in a legally compliant way? What do the courts, the public administration, but also the companies have to consider? Are there scenarios where the non-use of AI even violates (or, more likely, will violate in the future) applicable law?

The question of the legal conformity of AI use has to do with data protection, specifically the new Swiss Data Protection Act and, for internationally active companies, the General Data Protection Regulation. But it has even more to do with fairness and other requirements. Partly, these requirements are ethical in nature, but partly they are also legally anchored and are by no means subject to the “as you like it” principle. At the conference, many aspects of AI use will be analysed in detail from a legal perspective.

On the other hand, cybersecurity is the topic of the day. Time and again, there are successful attacks on companies and state institutions. Where they become known, they often shock. Where they do not become known, the situation is sometimes much worse. Without specialised knowledge, one wonders: Is this possible? How can and should the state react? Do we need new legal foundations? Such and other questions on cybersecurity will also be discussed at the conference.

In addition, there are other topics in the programme, one of which has special relevance: Cloud computing: Is it enough if the servers are located in Switzerland, even if Asian service providers and US authorities have access to them? Or do we need more? How can users be on the safe side? What should be considered from a legal point of view when moving to the cloud?

You can find the whole programme here.


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AUTHOR: Reinhard Riedl

Prof. Dr Reinhard Riedl is a lecturer at the Institute of Digital Technology Management at BFH Wirtschaft. He is involved in many organisations and is, among other things, Vice-President of the Swiss E-Government Symposium and a member of the steering committee of TA-Swiss. He is also a board member of, Praevenire - Verein zur Optimierung der solidarischen Gesundheitsversorgung (Austria) and, among others.

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