Legal and Ethical Foundations of Privacy and Security

Instructor(s): Dr. Komninos Komnios
Teaching Hours and Credit Allocation: 30 Hours, 6 Credits
Course Assessment: Exam & Coursework



Information security management entails a multitude of legal and ethical issues. Whether for individuals or organisations, information is often sensitive and valuable, therefore information access and usage of such an asset should follow a set of rules and regulations that protect the privacy and safety of their owners. This course also discusses the impact of ICT on the substantive law of Europe and the United States, and analyses the socio-legal effects of regulatory structures on the development of the Internet community. It eventually aims to explain basic legal and ethical issues and principles, according to European and US law and regulations.


Learning Outcomes

On completing the course students will be able to:

  • Identify potential legal and ethical issues regarding privacy and security
  • Understand several issues concerning digital property and intellectual property rights
  • Gain essential skills in electronic contracts and patents for modern ICT infrastructure development



  • Introduction to Computers, Cyberspace and Internet Technology: How they developed and what role they play in modern society
  • Digital Property - Regulating the Digital Environment
  • Cyberharms: Viruses, Denial of Service Attacks and Hacking; Terrorist Websites; Obscene and offensive content; Libellous materials and Spam
  • Privacy & Surveillance: Online Privacy, surveillance, commercial data gathering and Encryption; Data Protection and Data Security; Technologies to track and trace individuals offline
  • Intellectual Property Rights: Copyright in computer software; Patenting software applications; Trade Marks and Domain Names, internet keyword searches and trade marks
  • The New Intellectual Property: Peer-to-Peer Systems
  • Electronic Contracts; Digital Signatures. International Aspects: IPL and choice of law; Internet Regulation ICANN, WIPO and the registrars



Murray (2006), The Regulation of Cyberspace, Routledge.