Lance Michalson has a BA LLB.
Lance Michalson left Michalsons in 2013. He was a practising IT lawyer in South Africa for 17 years and was the founder of Michalsons Attorneys. He is now the In-house Legal Advisor at Dimension Data, Sydney, Australia. His main practice areas were:
- IT contracting
- IT Governance and IT law compliance
- Information Security (through a legal lens)
- Information Management (through a legal lens)
- Social Media
- Data privacy
In his IT practice he advises on the supply and acquisition of high value, complex IT systems and acts for local and international software houses (so is aware of international best practice), companies that procure their technology (particularly in the financial services sector) and end users.
He has advised on outsourcing transactions, cloud based transactions and numerous other agreements involving service provision, software licensing, maintenance and support. As a result of his experience, Lance has developed an in depth knowledge and practical awareness of the IT industry and the application of IT across a range of sectors.
His IT governance and e-commerce practice includes advising generally on all legal aspects of business in an electronic environment. This has resulted in the Michalsons “IT Legal Framework” which is used by several organizations to benchmark their levels of IT law compliance. He acts for hosting companies and Internet service providers and has given specialist advice in fields such as online gambling, setting up a certification authority, an online bank and various online trading platforms in different sectors. Over the years, his e-commerce practice has started to morph into a m-commerce practice where he as advised on mobile payment systems and issues around mobile commerce generally.
His information management and information security practice includes advising product vendors on compliance issues, PKI (having acted for several certification authorities), digital signatures, monitoring of electronic communications and the drafting and reviewing of information security policies. Arising from this is an awareness of how the law and information intersect and a keen understanding of data privacy: an emerging area of law in South Africa.
His social media practice has grown out of a deep understanding of copyright issues as they relate to software and web site content (where he has traditionally acted for website design companies and advertising agencies) and now with the advent of Web 3.0, the social web and new social media related issues. He has provided advice to individuals and companies which has resulted in defamatory content about them being removed from local blogs, YouTube, Facebook and Twitter.
He is passionate about technology, is a gadget aficionado and a big fan of hosted platforms on which legal applications and services can be provided on-demand. By using technology he tries to enable businesses to help-themselves or do-it-themselves where possible.
- Admitted as an attorney (1994)
- Director Hofmeyr Inc (now DLA Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr) (1998 to 2000)
- Partner at Harty Rushmere (2000)
- Partner at Arthur Andersen and head of SA IT Law Practice (2001)
- Partner at Michalsons Attorneys (2002 to 2014)
- Co-founder and director iForest Information Management (Pty) Ltd (2004 to 2009)
Expertise of Lance Michalson
- Member of Government Working Group 1 on Security and Privacy (1999)
- Advised government on possible policy approaches towards encryption (2001)
- Member of Department of Communications ECT Act drafting Committee (2001)
- Member of Task Team responsible for drafting Regulations Accreditation Authority (2002)
- Member of drafting team of Information Security Best Practice Guide to King II (2005)
- Member of drafting team of Escrow Best Practice Guide to King II (2007)
- Member of the King III IT Governance Sub-Committee (May 2009 to date)
Memberships / Affiliations
- Attorney of the High Court of South Africa
- Member of the Law Society of the Cape of Good Hope
- Past: Member of the Cyberlaw Committee of the Law Society of the Cape of Good Hope
- Past: Associate member of the American Bar Association
- Past: Appeal Adjudicator for the Wireless Application Service Providers Association of SA (WASPA)
Accolades for Lance Michalson
- One of South Africa’s Top Internet Personalities (1998)
- Profiled in Who’s Who of Southern Africa (2007)
- Mentioned in the 2006 and 2008 editions of The Legal 500 (Europe, Middle East & Africa)
- Mentioned in the 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012 and 2013 editions of the International Who’s Who of Internet & e-Commerce Lawyers
- Mentioned in the 2012 edition of the International Who’s Who of Internet e-Commerce & Data Protection Lawyers
- One of 12 IT and telecoms lawyers in South Africa selected for inclusion in the 2008 edition of Expert Guides, an international guide to the best lawyers in different countries (2008)
- Mentioned in the 2012 and 2013 editions of Best Lawyers
- Author of several publications in journals and magazines
- Author of “South Africa and the Millenium Timebomb – A guide to the legal issues” (1998)
- Contributed chapter titled “The use of e-mail and the Internet in the workplace” in Cyberlaw, the law of the Internet (2000)
- Co-author of the South African Chapter in “e-Commerce, Getting the Deal Through” published by the International Bar Association (where the same questions and answers were posed to leading practitioners in 27 jurisdictions worldwide), 2008 and 2009 editions
- Co-author of the South African Chapter in “The Global Privacy and Security Law Reference“, published by Aspen Publishers (2009 to date).
Guest speaker at many conferences
Guest lecturer at the University of Cape Town and the University of the Western Cape
Summit TV, SABC, Radio 702, 567, Business Day, Sunday Times, Finance Week, Financial Mail, IT Web