Expert opinions

The ITSL prepares legal opinions for companies and authorities with regard to specific legal issues or the implementation of regulatory requirements.


Examples of ITSL's expert opinions:

Swiss Federal Institute of Intellectual Property (IPI): Zuordnung von Sachdaten

On behalf of the Swiss Federal Institute of Intellectual Property (IPI), the ITSL has conducted a jurisprudential study on the topic of "Ownership, possession and use of non-personal data" in spring and summer 2020. The aim of this contribution is to analyse the current legal situation in Switzerland and the EU and to comment on possible future legal developments, in particular the creation of a property right in data or databases.

Against this background, the study examines in a comprehensive manner the question of how data can be allocated to the various legal entities (companies and private individuals, but also the state) de lege lata and should be allocated de lege ferenda. This broad perspective also covers the legal protection of a de facto allocation of data, especially through secrecy, and the allocation through contracts.

Together with other contributions, the present paper forms the basis for the preparation of a report by the IPI to the Federal Council. The report is dated 18 August 2020.

Zuordnung von Sachdaten - Eigentum, Besitz und Nutzung bei nicht-personenbezogenen Daten, wissenschaftliche Studie im Auftrag des IGE (PDF, 983 KB)

Federal Office of Justice/Federal Office of Communications: Data Portability and PIMS

In July 2017, the Federal Office of Justice and the Federal Office of Communications commissioned the ITSL to examine whether the legislator should take action to promote the re-use of personal data under the control of the data subjects, particularly in the context of so-called Personal Information Management Systems (PIMS), and whether data portability (as in the EU) should also be regulated in Swiss law.

The expert report was included in the "Digital Switzerland Strategy", with which the Federal Council intends to promote an action plan to exploit the opportunities of digitization in Switzerland.

Swiss Bar Association

On behalf of the Swiss Bar Association, ITSL prepared an expert opinion on the use of cloud services by lawyers in the summer of 2018. The results were presented in November 2018 at the Conference of Presidents of the Cantonal Bar Associations. The expert opinion was translated into French and has been published in 2019 as a bilingual volume in the ITSL book series.

The expert opinion examines whether and under what conditions lawyers working in Switzerland are allowed to use cloud services for processing, storing and archiving documents and other files in the course of their professional activities. This clarifies an issue that has been of great concern to the legal profession in Switzerland in recent years.

Network Blocking (SWICO)

In September 2016, the ITSL and the "Communication Systems Group" of the University of Zurich were commissioned by SWICO to prepare a report on network blocking. This report examined the technical options available for blocking, how effective they are, and whether the introduction of blocking is legally permissible under the Swiss Money Gambling Act.
Based on the fact that with today's technical possibilities blocking can be handled without great effort and without previous technical knowledge, the expert opinion questions the suitability of blocking to achieve the goals of the legislator. The results of the expert opinion were presented in December 2016 at an "open hearing" of the Parliamentary Group on Digital Sustainability (ParlDigi) in the Federal Parliament in Bern and discussed controversially with representatives from politics and business.