Most important innovations in the ICT sector from 2008

Most important innovations in the ICT sector from 2008

In the new year, consumers and businesses will have to adjust to a number of legal changes. The Federal Association for Information Technology, Telecommunications and New Media (BITKOM) has compiled an overview of the most important innovations for the IT and telecommunications sector.

Data retention From 2008, telecommunications providers are obliged to keep the connection data of all To save telephone calls in the fixed network and in the mobile network for six months. It is not the calls themselves that are saved, but the number, the duration of the call and, in the case of mobile phones, the location at the start of the call. The data are intended to be used by the investigative authorities to prevent and prosecute criminal offenses. The companies incur one-time costs of 75 million euros for setting up the corresponding infrastructure and running costs in the double-digit millions per year. From 2009, further storage obligations for e-mail communication, accessing websites and internet telephony will follow.

Copyright On January 1st, 2008 the long and controversial new copyright law came into effect in force. One focus is the amendment of the tax system for recording devices such as DVD recorders and storage media such as blank CDs. The taxes serve as compensation for the permitted, private copying of music, texts and other data. The royalties are collected by the collecting societies and distributed to the authors after deduction of internal administrative expenses. So far, the levies for classic IT devices and storage media have been specified in law. In the future, the collecting societies and industry associations will have to negotiate these. The fees are based on the actual use of the device for copying purposes and must be economically reasonable.

Handy -Parking A change in the road traffic regulationsallows 'cell phone parking' from 2008. Up until now, drivers in urban parking zones had to take a written receipt from a machine and place it in their vehicle where it was clearly visible. The new regulation that is now in force was preceded by a successful two-year field test in 15 cities. Motorists used this option more than 50,000 times per month and the municipalities benefited from lower costs. As a rule, mobile phone parkers have to register once on the Internet - including their mobile phone number, account details and license plate number. If you want to park your car later, call a service number from your mobile phone at the beginning and at the end of the parking time. The fees are debited monthly from the account to the minute. The new procedure will first be introduced in the cities of Cologne and Hamburg from February. This is followed by the cities of Potsdam in March and Berlin in April 2008.

Cell phone blocker In 2008, several federal states will introduce legal regulations that allow the judicial authorities to use so-called Use cellular blockers. The devices prevent unauthorized cell phone calls from inmates. The cellular blockers generate an interference signal that superimposes the signals from the cell phone networks, thus creating an artificial dead zone. The problem is that a precise delimitation of the interference fields is technically hardly possible and an impairment of the mobile phone traffic outside the prison area is to be expected. The plans are therefore criticized.

Corporate tax reform With effect from January 1, 2008, lower the legislature reduced the tax rates for companies from an average of 38.6 percent to 29.8 percent. With this, Germany has moved a good bit forward in terms of the nominal tax burden in an international comparison of locations. However, the lower tax rates are bought with a broadening of the tax assessment base. The ICT industryThis affects above all the lowering of the amount limit for the immediate depreciation of low-value assets from 410 to 150 euros and the proportionate addition of license fees to trade tax - for example for software.