Dubai: His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, has issued Law No. 9 of 2022 regulating the provision of digital services in Dubai to support the emirate’s strategic plans toward digital transformation and implement government policies aimed at digitising life in Dubai.
The law also aims to enhance confidence in digital services of all kinds in the emirate, in addition to keeping pace with technical developments to promote and improve the quality of digital services and simplify procedures for obtaining them anywhere and at any time, as well as encouraging the public and private sectors to implement plans, programmes and initiatives aimed at digitising life in the emirate.
The law obligates government entities, and the judicial power – which includes Dubai Courts, Public Prosecution – and non-governmental entities to provide current and future digital services to their clients, as determined by this law and the decisions issued pursuant thereto.
The law shall be implemented in stages to be defined by a decision issued by the Chairman of the Executive Council of Dubai, upon the recommendation of Dubai Digital Authority. The decision shall specify the start date of the implementation of each stage, the digital services and the entities covered by each stage, and the controls and procedures for their application.
The Law outlines the conditions for providing digital services and adopting digital identities for obtaining subscribed services; as well as cybersecurity requirements set by Dubai Electronic Security Centre. The Law also covers the conditions for electronic payment solutions approved by the Department of Finance in Dubai; service continuity in the event of disruptions; digital services approved by the Digital Dubai Authority; and provision of services in Arabic, English and other languages.
According to the Law, digital services provided in Dubai must be user-friendly and accessible to People of Determination without an extra fee. The Digital Dubai Authority, in coordination with the General Secretariat of The Executive Council of Dubai and the Dubai Electronic Security Center, can exempt an entity from any of these conditions.
The Law stipulates that customers are required to update their information submitted to digital service providers and adhere to terms and conditions outlined by the entity. Under the Law, customers will be held accountable for misusing the service and not adhering to required procedures.
According to the new Law, an entity can outsource its digital services to a public or private company, subject to the approval of relevant authorities and the Department of Finance. The outsourcing contract should clearly outline the responsibilities of each party, including contract duration and confidentiality requirements, as well as the rules for providing digital services.
The Director General of the Digital Dubai Authority, in coordination with the General Secretariat of The Executive Council of Dubai, will issue the decisions and technical requirements necessary to implement this Law. These decisions should be published in the Official Gazette, while the technical requirements must be published on the Digital Dubai Authority’s official website.
A year’s window
All digital service providers in Dubai must abide by the provisions of this Law within a year of its implementation. The Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai can extend this deadline for a similar period based on the recommendations of the Digital Dubai Authority.
The Law also states that federal and local legislations on digital transactions and digital signatures will apply to digital services in Dubai.
This Law is effective from the date of its publication in the Official Gazette.