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April Update: Tech and Telecoms

9 April 2018

With Parliament returning from Easter recess on the 16th April, a number of key political moments are set to impact Digital and Technology policy this month. Here, Plamen Sandrev, DeHavilland's Tech & Telecoms Consultant gives you the lowdown on what to watch out for this April.

What's on the agenda this month

by Plamen Sandrev, Monitoring Consultant

The Facebook/Cambridge Analytica (CA) data privacy scandal does not seem to be losing any momentum. After a number of eventful evidence sessions, as part of the Fake News inquiry, the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee is expecting a busy April. 

Work on the Committee’s inquiry will continue through a series of public evidence sessions. Four key witnesses will appear before the panel by the end of this month: Brittany Kaiser, former Director of Program Development at Cambridge Analytica; Alexander Nix, former CEO of CA; data scientist Dr Alexandr Kogan, and finally Mike Schroepfer, Chief Technology Officer at Facebook. 

Meanwhile, the Data Protection Bill has entered into report stage, which would allow both Houses to review the amended form of the Bill and make further changes to it. The date for the first session is yet to be announced. 

Outside of this, Ofcom announced earlier in April the results of the principal stage for mobile airwaves. All major UK network operators won some 5G capacity. The regulator will now move on to the ‘assignment’ stage, which would allow operators who have won spectrum in the principal stage to bid to determine where in the frequency bands their new spectrum will be located. This is not the end of the auctioning process, however. There are other important frequency bands yet to come: 3.6GHz and 700MHz. 

Elsewhere this month, the Lords Select Committee is expected to publish a report om Artificial Intelligence on 16 April. 

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Plamen Sendrev, Digital Policy Executive
Plamen Sendrev
Digital Policy Executive

Plamen is DeHavilland’s Policy Executive for the Media, Tech and Telecoms sector. Plamen has previously worked at the Parliamentary office of an MP. He is a graduate of the University of Birmingham, and holds a Masters in European Studies.