This article has been written by Oishika Banerji (Team Lawsikho). 

It has been published by Rachit Garg.


In today’s “Go Virtual” era, the need for a technology lawyer stands immense. Tech laws are meant to look after both private and public usage of technology and therefore, a tech lawyer does have a lot of responsibilities resting on their shoulders. 

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Knowledge about laws and offences in the tech world

Technology is a wide field and therefore, knowledge about both the laws governing it and the laws that can govern it in the coming future must be present with a tech lawyer. Knowledge cannot be only confined to the governing laws, but also to the offences that can take place in the tech world. Some of them are provided hereunder: 

  • Phishing: A method for attempting to obtain sensitive data, like bank account details, through a bogus email or website solicitation.
  • Ransomware: Through infected emails, messages, and malicious websites, a ransomware assault acquires access to a victim’s device and encrypts the data there.
  • Malware attacks: Malware attacks are frequent cyberattacks in which the victim’s system is compromised by malware, which is typically a malicious software.
  • Cyber defamation: When someone is unjustly accused of something in an online medium, such practice is referred to as cyber defamation or online defamation.
  • Sextortion: Sextortion can be considered as a form of blackmail which involves threats to release explicit text, images, or videos about someone who has been wrongly framed by their partners or sex rackets.
  • Revenge porn: Distributing pornographic or sexually explicit images or films of someone without their consent is a kind of sexual abuse and is often done by disgruntled exes.


Drafting is one of the foremost skills of all lawyers. The following drafting skills are assets for any tech lawyer:

Drafting a cyber complaint

For drafting a cyber complaint, the following things need to be kept in mind: 

  1. Knowing the jurisdiction of the offence and which cyber cell to register the complaint. (although as per the Information Technology Act, 2000, a cyber crime comes under the purview of global jurisdiction).
  2. Clearly providing the details of the aggrieved party (name, contact details, and address for mailing).
  3. Knowledge about the offence caused to seek redressal accordingly. 
  4. Drafting should be done with precision and without ambiguity. 
  5. Only material facts are to be mentioned and not the law. 

Drafting of legal notice for action against cyber defamation

Legal notice must be drafted in the prescribed format with the following essentials: 

  1. Should be drafted on the letterhead of an advocate, which is to be specific and properly structured.
  2. Address and contact details of the advocate must be present.
  3. Date of issuing the legal notice along with name, address, and contact details of the defendant person. 
  4. The name and requisite details of the client should be mentioned as well. 
  5. Description of the incident giving rise to the cause of action has to be mentioned.
  6. The relief for the client should be clearly claimed. 
  7. A specific direction to the opposite party alongside the limitation period has to be provided.  
  8. The notice must be signed (with date) by the advocate.

Drafting of development agreement 

Some of the important clauses of the development agreement that has to be taken into consideration are:

  1. Determining the parties of the agreement.
  2. Software development services to be availed.
  3. The statement of work that is to be executed by means of the agreement.
  4. Obligations of the customers availing services.
  5. Fees to be paid to the developer of the software.
  6. Confidentiality clause.
  7. Customer ownership of work products.
  8. Background of the technology developed.
  9. Consequences and scope of infringement.

Drafting of master service agreement 

Drafting of master service agreement is another key skill that tech lawyers must be aware of in order to:

  • Work with E-commerce companies.
  • Maintain customer relationships, resolve disputes between the customers and vendors and IP disputes.

Drafting notification requirements in the event of a cyberattack 

This is necessary to make the governing cyber cell immediately aware about the cyberattack taking place. Such notification should generally consist of:

  1. Location of such offence.
  2. Alerting the aggrieved party.
  3. Name of the party and other requisite details such as phone number and address. 

Safeguarding trade secrets by Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA)

Usage of NDA in companies is not new to safeguard confidential information. With the coming of tech lawyers, the need for the following has increased: 

  • How to draft NDA
  • Basics and meaning of trade secret 
  • Scope of NDA
  • Clauses to be mentioned in a NDA.

Registering a cyber complaint 

Reporting cyber fraud involves the following:

  1. You can visit the National Cyber Crime Reporting portal (Helpline Number -1930) to register any complaint about cyber crime, including cyber fraud. 
  2. The nearest police station can be contacted as well to file your complaint. 
  3. Complaints can also be filed by email to the cyber cell of the state.

Filing a complaint on the National Cyber Crime Reporting portal involves the following: 

  1. Open web page
  2. Click on ‘File a complaint’.
  3. Accept the terms and conditions on the next page.
  4. Following this, “Report other cybercrime” option has to be resorted to.
  5. Select the ‘citizen login’ option, thereby entering requisite details. 
  6. Enter the OTP sent to your registered phone number.
  7. Enter the details of cyber crime on the next page. 
  8. After reviewing, the ‘submit’ option has to be clicked.
  9. After being directed to the incident details page, mention the supporting evidence of the crime and click on ‘Save and Next’.
  10. The following page needs the details of the alleged suspect if you have any.
  11. Verify the information and click on the ‘Submit’ button.

The above is an example of registering a cyber complaint within Indian jurisdiction. Different nations have their own set of rules and guidelines for doing the same. 

Reporting customer data breach

Tech lawyers must be aware about the procedure required to be followed to report customer data breach. This helps the firms connect with their clients in a better manner. 

Creating content for businesses

Creating content for businesses is a skill required for tech lawyers because:

  1. Content marketing is considered to be essential for any law firm that is looking to generate more traffic and leads online.
  2. Content creation is considered to be an ideal marketing strategy for firms to grow
  3. Ranking high in search and reaching users actively.
  4. Attract authority-boosting backlinks to the website, which offers strong signal to Google, therefore informing the firm to be reputable. 
  5. Web content that has been optimized by search engines helps firms know about the frequently used keywords by people to search about firms. 

Carrying out legal risk audits in digital platforms offering services 

It is the process of internal audit that helps to assess tomorrow’s risks today, and therefore is considered to be one of the key areas in the organisation’s use of technology. Tech lawyers are vested with this responsibility and therefore need to be efficient in the same. 

Carrying out IP due diligence for software companies

Before going for licensing, assignment or franchising, it is essential that due diligence for intellectual property to be transferred be done. Checks and balance to the licensee company’s activities are a necessity. Tech lawyers should be equipped to handle such tedious processes. 

Creating milestone-based deliverables in development contracts

Necessary elements tech lawyers should know in regard to this are:

  • How to write milestone-based deliverables in development contracts.
  • What all to specify while writing milestone-based contract.
  • Mentioning of which information is required or giving effect to such contract. 
  • Possible remedies for breach of such contracts.

Advising a client on the change in the applicability of laws 

Tech lawyers should be skilled enough to effectively advise a client on changes in laws applicable to them when they intend to automate some parts of their manufacturing processes.

Advising on copyright and trademark infringement of online platforms

Violation of intellectual property rights in digital platforms is a common sight in today’s time. It is either software infringement or domain name violation. In both cases, both copyright and trademark rights are said to be violated. Tech lawyers should be skilled in carrying out the following:

  • Compliance with laws like GDPR and DMCA
  • Knowledge about the possible remedies and actions to be taken in cases of infringement to provide relief to the aggrieved party. 

Hand in cyber forensics and the law of evidence across different jurisdictions

Computer forensics investigators follow cohesive and consistent methods when extracting and analysing digital evidence in order to prevent legal issues when presenting that evidence in a court of law. This is because many legal systems throughout the world are founded on precedents. Knowing about such methods and applying the same is an important skill for tech lawyers to win a case. 

Advising tech businesses

Tech lawyers are vested with the responsibility of advising tech businesses in the following major areas: 

  • Rights and liabilities of tech businesses and platforms at times of infringement or breach of their data.
  • Intermediary liabilities.
  • Legal remedies available to the aggrieved party.
  • Transfer of data between two different jurisdictions.

Performing legal work on Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies advice across jurisdictions

One of the prime advantages of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies is that third parties and intermediaries, such as banks, can be avoided when two individuals are willing to transact money with each other, thereby making it possible by means of public and private keys. 

The two individuals can be in different jurisdictions, and therefore performing legal work in consonance with the same effectively is essential. 

Idea and interest towards emerging technologies

To be an avid tech lawyer, knowledge about fundamental concepts of technology and being updated about emerging technologies (AI, Robotics, Drones, SpaceTech, Augmented Reality and Autonomous vehicles) stands must. 

Knowing various modes in which technology can be transferred

Knowledge and clarity about the modes of technology transfer are required, and the tech lawyers need to be well-versed with: 

  1. Licensing: The licensing agreements are considered to be legally binding contacts by means of which the licensor (technology owner) gives permission to use such technology to the licensee. The ownership is not transferred in the same. 
  2. Assigning: In case of assigning, the ownership is transferred. This is what makes it different from licensing as well. 
  3. Franchising: In case of franchising, the recipient gains the ability to produce goods independently that are on par with those made by the technology supplier in terms of quality. The franchisor has stricter control over the franchisee as compared to licensors have over licensees. 

Understanding taxation on sales of software

This skill is required for two reasons, as have been provided hereunder: 

  1. As there lies no standards or guidelines for recognising software as tangible property, there is some confusion when taxing software for sales tax purposes. 
  2. Software sales frequently entail transmitting standardised, prewritten software to the consumer. In this situation, it will be crucial to track and divide the expenditures of the software and consulting services.

While the above-discussed skills are some of the most significant ones that a tech lawyer must possess, they are not limited to the same. As technology evolves, skills evolve along with the same.

If you have these skills already, you are on your way to becoming a successful tech lawyer, and if you do not have them, it is never too late to learn.

All the best!

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