[kictanet] Data privacy rights test in Rubis, Gulf buyout dispute

Barrack Otieno barrack at kictanet.or.ke
Sun Sep 26 13:04:12 EAT 2021

@Mwendwa Kivuva <kivuva at kictanet.or.ke> interesting case that will set
precedence. Very valid and pertinent issues being discussed. Technology
will certainly raise the threshold of accountability. Increased automation
will certainly reduce monkey business.


On Sat, 25 Sep 2021, 11:00 pm Mwendwa Kivuva via KICTANet, <
kictanet at lists.kictanet.or.ke> wrote:

> More at Business Daily
> https://www.businessdailyafrica.com/bd/corporate/companies/data-privacy-rights-test-rubis-gulf-buyout-dispute-3560922
> If you buy somebody’s computer and recover deleted data, do you own that
> information, and can you use it to make a claim against the seller?
> A bitter dispute between Gulf Energy and Rubis Energy has broken out, and
> is expected to answer that question as well as offer a guide to future
> cases regarding data privacy.
> “By notice of warranty claim dated March 3, 2021 the respondent alleged,
> inter alia, that with the assistance of data recovery specialists and
> through advanced data mining techniques, it had recovered information from
> the server and previously formatted PCs and laptops, information relating
> to the entire business of the petitioner,” Gulf Energy adds.
> The data recovered included audited statements, financial records and
> emails relating to Gulf Energy’s business.
> The French multinational thought it had bagged a steep discount when it
> paid €129 million (Sh16.4 billion) for key assets owned by Gulf Energy, but
> an analysis of the goods it bought has left both companies pointing
> accusing fingers at one another while shouting fraud.
> Rubis reportedly activated a price reduction clause in the sale agreement
> that saved it €10 million (Sh1.2 billion).
> Before handing over physical assets to Rubis, Gulf Energy erased all data
> from computers through formatting.
> But aggressive data recovery methods used by Rubis led the French
> multinational to conclude that Gulf Energy had overstated the value of the
> assets.
> Rubis has used the information it recovered from computers acquired in the
> asset sale to claim a refund of Sh4.1 billion, with a disclaimer that the
> demand may rise depending on what further analysis of information obtained
> reveals.
> The French firm also wants Gulf Energy to provide more financial records
> up to 2019 to enable further analysis.
> To wriggle out of the refund claim, Gulf Energy has filed a suit against
> Rubis, citing privacy violations in the use of the recovered data. It wants
> the High Court to stop Rubis from using the information to claim any
> refunds.
> Gulf Energy insists that the data recovered was not part of information
> that was to be exchanged between the two companies during negotiations over
> the assets acquisition.
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