The IT Law Wiki


Autonomous vehicles[]

An operator

of an autonomous vehicle is the person who is seated in the driver's seat, or if there is no person in the driver's seat, causes the autonomous technology to engage.[1]
is an occupant of an automated vehicle who is not responsible for the driving task, but is still responsible for certain aspects of the journey (i.e., inputting a destination for the vehicle).[2]
is a person, other than a chauffeur, who does either of the following:
(a) Operates a motor vehicle upon a highway or street.
(b) Operates an automated motor vehicle upon a highway or street.[3]


An operator is an entity responsible for day-to-day operation and investment in a particular asset or system.

An operator

owns administration rights on the services it provides and/or on the entities it owns, is able to negotiate partnerships with equivalent counterparts and define policies specifying how a service can be accessed by users.[4]


An operator is

[t]he symbolic representation of a process or operation performed against one or more operands in an expression, such as "+" (plus, or addition) and ">" (greater than). When evaluated, operators return a value as their result. If multiple operators appear in an expression, they are evaluated in order of their operator precedence.[5]


An operator is

[a] person, organisation or enterprise engaged in or offering to engage in an aircraft operation. Note: In the context of remotely-piloted aircraft, an aircraft operation includes the remotely-piloted aircraft system.[6]

Web sites[]

Under California law, an operator is

any person or entity that owns a Web site located on the Internet or an online service that collects and maintains personally identifiable information from a consumer residing in California who uses or visits the Web site or online service if the Web site or online service is operated for commercial purposes. It does not include any third party that operates, hosts, or manages, but does not own, a Web site or online service on the owner's behalf or by processing information on behalf of the owner.[7]

Under COPPA, an operator is:

any person who operates a website located on the Internet or an online service and who collects or maintains personal information from or about the users of or visitors to such website or online service, or on whose behalf such information is collected or maintained, or offers products or services for sale through that website or online service, where such website or online service is operated for commercial purposes involving commerce:
(a) Among the several States or with 1 or more foreign nations;
(b) In any territory of the United States or in the District of Columbia, or between any such territory and
(1) Another such territory, or
(2) Any State or foreign nation; or
(c) Between the District of Columbia and any State, territory, or foreign nation. This definition does not include any nonprofit entity that would otherwise be exempt from coverage under Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act (15 U.S.C. §45).[8]


  1. Cal. Veh. Code §38750(a)(4).
  2. Federal Automated Vehicles Policy: Accelerating the Next Revolution In Roadway Safety, at 85.
  3. Mich. Public Acts of 2013, Act No. 231, §36 (Dec. 20, 2013) (full-text).
  4. IoT Terminology (full-text).
  5., GIS Glossary (full-text).
  6. Unmanned Aircraft System Operations in UK Airspace–Guidance, at 4.
  7. Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code §22577(c).
  8. 16 C.F.R. 312.2.