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Legal Compliancy

Wireless Law for Commercial Venues in the UK

Digital Economy Act

but there’s other legislation as well that you must adhere to when offering Wi-Fi or Internet services at commercial venues or business locations.

We help you better understand about the laws which are not just in the UK, we’ve listed the relevant sections below:

Data Logging & Retention

Relevant law and regulation includes: The European Directive (2006/24/EC) which has been implemented in the UK under the Data Retention (EC Directive) Regulations 2009 and the January 2004 the Code of Practice (for voluntary retention of communications data) implemented under the Anti-Terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001.

Under the above directive, certain types of data are required to be retained necessary to identify end users accessing the Internet. The type of data to be retained is traffic data and location data which can trace the source of a communication.

Examples of relevant data include:

  • User ID; name and address; date and time of login and log off
  • IP address allocated to a user; MAC Address, originator of the communication
  • The service used (“communications data”).HTTP, POP, IMAP, SKYPE, Etc.

The Home Office would expect such data to be retained for a period of 12 months. For public sector establishments we can keep the data for up to 7 years if required.

As a matter of best practice an establishment should have in place facilities to store and access communications data for a period of 12 months from the date of the data coming into existence.

The purpose of maintaining communications data is to assist intelligence and law enforcement agencies such as the police in their investigation of criminal and terrorist activities.

RIPA – Law enforcement requests for information

Under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000, intelligence and law enforcement agencies such as the police can direct that communications data be provided for the purposes of investigation of crime. It is therefore very important that any communications data that the police or other law enforcement agency may require is stored and capable of being accessed upon receipt of a valid court order for the data.

Copyright Infringement

The government has now passed the Digital Economy Bill which is designed to implement steps to reduce online copyright infringement by end users. The Bill will cover illegal downloading of copyrighted material and illegal file sharing.

The Bill came into law in June 2010 and prescribes obligations to keep end user records to assist copyright owners in identifying, and taking action.

Data Protection Act 1998

Under the Data Protection Act 1998 any user of Internet access services in a public establishment is entitled to request at any time details of his/her personal information. Failure to securely maintain and make available data to a data subject is an offence and may lead to the imposition of fines by the Information Commissioner.

Offering internet hotspot services to your customers isn’t as easy as sticking your Wi-Fi router at your window and hoping for the best, as some of our competition seem to think.

For information on how to avoid falling foul of the law within your commercial establishment then you should contact us

Supporting EU and Other Jurisdictions’ Anti-Terrorism Laws

Directive 2006/24/EC requires any service providers to store and keep logs about their users who use Internet services for at least 6 months but no longer than 2 years.

In short the system has to establish the user’s identity, store login information, and record usage times and Internet services accessed.

In the us, Australia and various other countries similar laws exist obliging Internet Service Providers to keep records of Internet usage.

Our system is complies with this directive as it stores this information in a secure location, protecting privacy rights of hotspot users while making their usage of your Hotspot fully traceable. As this directive does not apply to all jurisdictions, it can be switched on or off per hotspot.

The system establishes an identity of the hotspot user either through the use of a payment gateway or by forcing users to register with their mobile phone before they can use the hotspot (optional feature based on SMS based password delivery).

The SMS based password delivery is required to fully comply with this directive in case of Voucher based access, free access or guest access. Recording an email address, the IP address or the MAC address of a device alone is not enough to establish an identity.

We cannot provide legal advice or assurance that the records kept by Managed Connections meet your local legislation’s legal requirements, but given our record keeping and identity solution our service goes further than any other hotspot service.

Please feel free to enquire about particular Internet tracing aspects if you have specific questions regarding the support of your country’s legislation.