The Apportionment of Liability on Electronic Commerce in the Arab Countries: A Literature Review

Reported by Sonny Zulhuda

Image The above is the abstract for an academic paper that was presented in the 2nd Global Islamic Marketing Conference (GIMC) 2012 in 16-18 January 2012, Abu Dhabi, UAE. It is originally a working draft of literature review by my student Yahya A.F. for his doctoral research. He himself attended and presented the paper.

Myself being in the supervisory role jointly drafted the summarised review paper for the Conference. Here is the full Abstract:

The increasing popularity of electronic commerce has shown its problematic side, namely the issue of apportionment of liability. Due to the involvement of several intermediaries, it is often uncertain if those intermediaries would assume responsibility, or to what extent if any, should the transaction goes wrong.The current paper, a research in progress, identifies this issue in the context of e-commerce practices in Arab countries with particular attention to the Palestine. It goes further with a literature review on the peculiar issues related to the e-commerce and the apportionment of liability, and ultimately sheds the light on the direction of research needed in future on the areas of e-commerce law both in the Palestine and the Arab countries generally.

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Towards a secure and sustainable Critical Information Infrastructure (CII) – Policy & Legal Frameworks

By: Sonny Zulhuda

Above is the title of my paper that has been approved for presentation at the International Symposium on Social Management Systems (SSMS 2010) to be held in March this year in Kochi, Japan. The abstract reads as follows:

The increasing reliance of critical infrastructures (such as those operating the national communications, energy, transport, and defence systems) on a computerized and networked environment imposes an enormous security task for both their operators and users. The fact that attack to critical infrastructure is not merely an ordinary criminal matter but rather an issue of national security makes it more urgent for policy-makers to come up with policies or laws addressing various issues ranging from information sharing to public-private cooperation, from technical solutions to security procedures, and from public awareness to law enforcement.

Looking at the scope it covers and the role it plays, the law on critical information infrastructures is so critical not only because it is part of national security measures, but also because the law may well determine the level of national readiness for landing a global investment. This is true because major business processes are now dependent on the secure information technology tools and networks. The biggest task ahead for policy-makers is therefore to prepare the best legal framework to protect the country’s critical information infrastructure and, at least, to manage and minimise the security risks that surround a networked environment.

This paper hypothesizes that security risk management of the critical information infrastructure can not be effectively sustained without a comprehensive framework that consists of, among others, good policies and legal framework. In Malaysia, the legal framework on CII can be found in several pieces of legislation. This paper seeks to discuss the role of the law especially on the restriction of access to and movement in the perimeters of CII as well as the law on computer and network security

KEYWORDS: critical information infrastructure, legal framework

CSR in Cyberspace: A Quest for the Missing Link (An Abstract)

By: Sonny Zulhuda *

The tremendous participation of companies in technological race and in exploiting the cyberspace is often marked with over-excitement and the sense of lawlessness. This is not true if one regards the cyberspace as a space without rule. The fact remains that there are rules in cyberspace just as people have rules in the real physical world.

When it comes to the notion of corporate social responsibility (‘CSR’), the matter may become more confusing: what kind of responsibility companies could have, and to whom they owe such responsibility. Assume that an online business entity does not have a physical presence – not physically registered, therefore not legally incorporated: does it assume a corporate status to subject it to the CSR? As for the incorporated ones, question may arise as to what responsibilities they bear when embarking in the online environment and to whom they are owed.

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Information as Business Asset in the Globalized Economy: Legal and Judicial Notes (An Abstract)

By: Sonny Zulhuda*

In today’s globalized economy, the way people store, reformulate and process information – and eventually generate revenues out of it, had marked the shift of attention from a raw material-based and labor-exploiting business to the information and knowledge-based entrepreneurship. Information is increasingly becoming not only a buzz-word for executives but also the goose that lays the golden eggs.

In response to this trend, this paper attempts to do two things; first, revisiting the notion of information as a business asset, and secondly, analyzing how this notions is responded by the law. The first part seeks to reconfirm that information is the new big thing in today’s business that is characterized by globalization, digitization and deregulation of rules. The second describes and analyzes how the law –notably at the judges’ hands– contributes to the strengthening of this notion by tendency to recognize the proprietary status of information – something that is not so well established just yet.

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Risks of Internet Banking vis a vis Consumer Protection in Malaysia (An Abstract)

By: Sonny Zulhuda *

Like other ICT inventions that promise both unprecedented benefits and scaring risks, Internet banking has been received by both excitement and worries. While it offers high level of effectiveness such as online fund transfer as easy as from customers’ home desktop, it also haunts many as reflected in incidents involving theft of personal access code, tracing of online footprints and intrusion of online activities of other customers.

In Malaysia, Internet banking is still at its infancy though the number of service providers is increasing. Unfortunately, some crucial areas are left unclear for Internet banking consumers. This includes issues of distribution of liability between Internet banking stakeholders, use of personal data of bank customers, and low level of consumer protection provided by Internet banking operators. Furthermore, serious risks are awaiting consumers since the country’s consumer protection law statute is not applicable to commercial activities effected by information and communications technologies (ICT).

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E-Business and Privacy: Total Strangers or Marriage Made in Heaven? (An Abstract)

By: Sonny Zulhuda *

The information economy derives its name from the fact that information has become a powerful source of wealth for today’s corporations. Understandably there comes the rising demand to ensure this promised wealth is not unnecessarily missed. For this, today’s corporate world witnesses a great evolution in terms of the way they run the business by adopting the advantage of information and communications technologies (ICT). These tools have been increasingly exploited in order to secure the wealth as promised by the information age.

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E-Commerce and Consumer Protection in Malaysia

By: Sonny Zulhuda *

The internet hits us like the storm and its implosion is truly phenomenal. It’s a forum to retrieve, communicate and disseminate information. Last but not least, it’s the best place to advertise goods without being restrained by conventional/traditional modes of transaction and costly advertisements.

What is Electronic Commerce?

Electronic commerce (e-commerce) means all forms of commercial activities that are carried out through electronic networks including the promotion, marketing, supply, order or delivery of goods or services. Internet is the most common medium used for e-commerce worldwide.

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