Answer ... Innovation in the fintech space may be protected by IP rights in Luxembourg.
For instance, a company whose products will be sold, promoted and registered within the European Union can register its trademark with the EU Intellectual Property Office.
A software program can also be registered with the iDEPOT, which is operated by the Benelux Office for Intellectual Property (BOIP). This procedure is a reliable way of ratifying that an idea has been tangibly performed at a specific date, before any IP rights are acquired. The fintech company submits to BOIP the source code for the program, which will be kept in the iDEPOT for a period of five to 10 years. However, registration in the iDEPOT in no circumstances constitutes an IP right; its use is solely administrative.
The Law of 20 July 1992 on Patents, as amended, does not protect software programs as such.
Answer ... Luxembourg was one of the first European countries to introduce a form of electronic ID (eID), which is issued by the state to Luxembourg nationals only. However, non-nationals may make use of other forms of e-signing techniques (eg, smartcards, tokens).
Luxembourg has also incorporated distributed ledger technology into its legal system, allowing for securities to be transferred on platforms using such technology.
Other examples of the country’s dedication to promoting innovation include:
- the multiple publicly backed incubators and accelerators that are present in the country;
- the diverse public grants that are available to fintech companies for research and development; and
- the fintech programmes and support offered by the University of Luxembourg.
The CSSF has also incentivised innovation – for example, by allowing financial service providers, under certain conditions, to verify or identify clients through the use of video identification. The CSSF uses this process in order to execute and support the completion of clients’ identification, and thus satisfy all necessary identification obligations pursuant to the Law of 12 November 2004 on the Fight against Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing, as amended.