Law No. 46 of 2021 on Electronic Transactions and Trust Services (“New Law”), to regulate electronic transactions. It adds legal aspects similar to those found in the European IDAS Regulation into UAE legislation to boost trust in electronic transactions.
Federal Law No. 1 of 2006, which dealt with electronic transactions and electronic commerce (the “Old Law”), would be repealed on January 2, 2022. If you are subject to the law, you have a 12-month grace period to review your compliance.
The “TDRA” is the legal authority that has the power to regulate the legislation. Trust services given to the government sector, as well as trust services that rely on information or services from the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship, will be under the control of the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship. TDRA, however, is unable to regulate the statute since it lacks sufficient authority (e.g. Emirates ID).
The law establishes a new framework for regulating Electronic ID Systems and Trust Services. Electronic identification is abbreviated as eID. Electronic identification can be used by both businesses and customers to authenticate their identities. The TDRA is responsible for developing rules, procedures, and standards for electronic identification systems (eID), verification processes (eIDV), and digital IDs after conferring with relevant authorities.
What exactly do the Trust Services entail?
When consumers and businesses use these technologies, they may feel more secure knowing that their transactions are safe and secure.
The four basic categories of trust services regulated by the Law are as follows.
- People can electronically sign a document or data set to signify their permission to it.
- A digital seal is applied to a document after it has been validated.
- An electronic time stamp proves the existence of a document at a specific point in time;
- Electronic registered delivery services give verification of data transmission and receipt.
The Importance of the New Law
- The new legislation streamlines licensing procedures by utilizing cutting-edge technology that makes digital transactions easier.
- It facilitates a variety of civil and commercial operations, such as marriage, personal status, and notary public, as well as real estate transactions, such as renting, buying, selling, and amending contracts.
- It will make judicial proceedings and the resolution of civil and commercial disputes more efficient.
- It will make accepting, generating, and maintaining electronic records easier. The digital signature allows for the electronic issuance of permits, licenses, and approvals, as well as the electronic receiving of fees and other payments.
- It will enable the electronic submission and receipt of government procurement bids and tenders.
Other Key Provisions of the New Law
- There are no exceptions to this rule:
The Old New Testament made it clear that some forms of trade were prohibited (e.g. property transactions, or negotiable instruments). The new law contains no exceptions. Unless the statute expressly indicates otherwise, anybody may use any electronic signature or electronic stamp.
- Under the new law, a license is required.
The New Law requires that every business providing “trust services,” regardless of size, obtain a license from the TDRA. The breadth of this license requirement is currently unknown, as it might apply to any electronic signature mechanism.
Certified Trust Services are subject to a more severe review and have more legal ramifications under the New Law. No one may undertake certified trust services without first acquiring a TDRA license, according to the New Law and its associated Executive Regulations.
- Types of electronic signatures
Electronic signatures now have the same legal weight as handwritten signatures as a result of the New Law. There were no distinctions in the past, but there are now three types of electronic signatures under the New Law: Basic Electronic Signature, Approved Electronic Signature, and Qualified Electronic Signature.
Each of these signatures will have a different level of security attached to it.
- Digital Signatures are protected by cutting-edge technology.
With requiring digital signatures to be backed up by secure modern technology, the Electronic Transactions and Trust Services Act strengthens their legal value. In terms of acceptability, it will have the same legal authority as a handwritten signature. At institutions, banks, and courts, whether inside or outside, the digital signature will eliminate the need for human presence. People both inside and outside the UAE can use the digital signature to complete various government transactions such as contracts, agreements, and other transactions, as long as their countries develop a digital identity and trust services system that fulfills UAE requirements.
- Trust List of the United Arab Emirates
The TDRA will create and publish a UAE Trust List, which will include a list of licensees and their trust services under the Law. The Executive Regulations will specify the requirements and conditions for entry to the UAE Trust List.
- Mark is someone you can trust.
The TDRA’s goal is to create a trust mark that certified trust service providers can use to show that they provide accredited trust services that meet the Law’s requirements. The purpose of this article is to give a broad overview of the topic. The information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be relied upon without seeking specialist legal advice in each matter.