Cloud Computing Law: Transactions (Coursera)

Cloud Computing Law: Transactions is an online MOOC Course, Offered by the Queen Mary University of London via Coursera.

This is Course 1 of 3 in the Cloud Computing Law Specialization.

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Cloud Computing Law: Transactions Queen Mary University of London Course Overview

Have you ever wondered what’s in the small print of cloud contracts? Or who owns the information you upload to the cloud? And who can access and control it? If so, then this course is for you! You’ll learn to identify the legal risks involved in cloud computing transactions – and suggest possible solutions.

To understand how cloud computing works, we’ll first describe different kinds of cloud services and explain how they differ from in-house IT in terms of control, access, and cybersecurity. To understand how the law applies to cloud computing transactions, we’ll focus on the contracts between cloud providers and their customers. You’ll learn to identify and interpret key contract terms and assess whether customers might negotiate better terms with providers. Finally, we’ll explain how English law protects trade secrets and copyright works stored in the cloud.

If you’re a lawyer, this course will be your guide to cloud infrastructure and supply chains. If you have a technical or commercial background, this course will introduce you to key legal issues in contracts and intellectual property. In short, if you’re interested in how the law applies to cloud computing, this course is for you.

Cloud Computing Law: Transactions Coursera Syllabus

WEEK 1 – Understanding Cloud Computing

This week, we cover the basics of cloud computing. We look at how cloud computing technology works and how it differs from traditional, in-house IT. We explain that the cloud is not ‘one thing: instead, there are different service types and deployment models, as well as so-called ‘layered’ services. We then look at the legal implications of different cloud services. Finally, we consider the importance of data location and the relationship between cloud customers and providers. By the end of this week, you will be able to identify the legal and regulatory risks that a potential cloud customer should consider.

WEEK 2 – Standard Cloud Contracts

The relationship between the cloud customer and the provider is governed by contract. Cloud contracts set out the parties rights and obligations. They also cover issues such as choice of law and forum, liability in case of breach of contract, how changes might be made, and what happens when a contract is terminated. This week, we look at the clauses typically found in standard cloud contracts and what these might mean in practice for both customers and providers. We highlight how these clauses can differ per provider – and how cloud contracts differ from other IT contracts, such as those for outsourcing and IP licensing. By the end of this week, you should describe the terms a cloud customer is likely to find in standard cloud contracts.

WEEK 3 – Negotiated Cloud Contracts

Standard cloud contracts typically favour the provider. However, large businesses or government departments can sometimes negotiate more favourable terms with cloud providers. This week, we look at the factors that influence whether cloud providers will negotiate terms with customers, as well as the terms customers want to negotiate – and how those negotiations typically develop. By the end of this week, you will be able to describe a cloud customer’s prospects for negotiating contract terms with a cloud provider.

WEEK 4 – Intellectual Property in the Cloud

This week, we look at questions of ‘ownership’ of information stored, created, processed, and distributed in cloud environments. We examine the information flows between cloud providers and their customers and distinguishes between content that is stored and processed by users, from information generated by cloud providers. We’ll see that, although intellectual property law may determine ownership rights in relevant information, the law does not necessarily achieve what parties to cloud computing transactions expect or need. Moreover, in practice, ownership may be less important than control over, and access to, information. By the end of this week, you will be able to describe how a cloud customer can protect and control information in the cloud.

Cloud Computing Law: Transactions Online Course Instructor

  • Johan David Michels
  • Christopher Millard
  • Chris Reed

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5-10 Hours/week

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4 Weeks

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