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Category Archives: United States

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House Committees Approve Information Sharing and Data Breach Notice Bills, Setting Stage for Floor Vote

Posted in Congress, Cybersecurity, Data Breaches, Data Security, United States

Earlier this week, an information-sharing bill and a data breach bill passed through committee votes in the House, setting the stage for potentially significant legislative action on key cybersecurity issues in the near future.  On Tuesday, the House Homeland Security Committee approved the National Cybersecurity Protection Advancement Act by a unanimous voice vote, following a… Continue Reading

Court Grants Summary Judgment on VPPA Claims Against Hulu Based on Lack of ‘Knowing’ Disclosure

Posted in United States

On Tuesday, March 31, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California granted Hulu’s motion for summary judgment in a complaint alleging that Hulu had violated the Video Privacy Protection Act (VPPA) by sharing user information with Facebook.  In granting summary judgment, the court found no genuine issue of material fact regarding whether… Continue Reading

Danielle Citron Discusses Legal Remedies for Online Harassment

Posted in United States

At a talk today with members of Covington’s Privacy and Data Security Group, Danielle Citron highlighted the need for more remedies for victims of online harassment, including women harassed by so-called revenge pornography. Citron, a professor at the University of Maryland School of Law, focuses on information privacy law and is the author of Hate… Continue Reading

AT&T Court Narrowly Interprets FTC Common Carrier Exception and Permits Throttling Case To Go Forward, Addresses Net Neutrality Issue

Posted in Federal Communications Commission, United States

As we previously reported, in January AT&T filed a Motion to Dismiss the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC’s) complaint alleging that AT&T engaged in unfair and deceptive conduct in violation of Section 5 of the FTC Act when it “throttled” mobile broadband subscribers who were “grandfathered” into the company’s unlimited mobile data plan.  AT&T moved to… Continue Reading

FTC and Wyndham Present Arguments on Whether FTC has Declared Unreasonable Cybersecurity Practices Unfair

Posted in Federal Trade Commission

On Friday, March 27, 2015, the Federal Trade Commission and Wyndham Worldwide Corp. filed supplemental briefing in the Third Circuit regarding whether the FTC had made an adjudicative decision that the FTC Act prohibits unreasonable cybersecurity practices and, if not, whether a federal court could hear a case charging a violation of the FTC Act… Continue Reading

FCC to Hold Workshop On Broadband Privacy

Posted in Federal Communications Commission, United States

The Federal Communications Commission will hold a workshop on April 28 to explore its role in protecting the privacy of broadband Internet access users. The Commission’s recent net neutrality order applied certain privacy requirements to broadband access providers, including Section 222 of the Communications Act.  That statute requires telecommunications carriers to protect the confidentiality of… Continue Reading

House Focuses on Data Breach Bills

Posted in Congress, United States

By Ani Gevorkian The issues of data breach notification and data security issued received a fair amount of attention in the House this week:  On Wednesday, the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Trade approved one data breach bill, and on Thursday, Rep.  Jim Langevin (D-RI), co-chairman of the House Cybersecurity Caucus, announced the release… Continue Reading

House Holds Internet of Things Hearing

Posted in Congress, United States

By Ani Gevorkian The Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade of the House Energy and Commerce Committee held a hearing on Tuesday entitled, “The Internet of Things: Exploring the Next Technology Frontier.” The hearing focused on the promises Internet of Things (“IoT”) technology holds, and what role Congress should play in addresses the challenges IoT… Continue Reading

Recap of Covington’s Privacy By Design Workshop

Posted in United States

As we previously reported, Covington was selected from thousands of applicants to host a Privacy by Design bootcamp and workshop during last week’s South by Southwest (“SXSW”) Interactive festival, which featured five days of compelling presentations and panels from industry leaders in emerging technology.  SXSW designs workshops in particular to provide in-depth, hands-on education taught… Continue Reading

Congressional Privacy Bill: Do Not Track Kids Act of 2015

Posted in Congress, United States

As part of our continuing coverage of the Congressional Privacy Bill, we provide below a deeper examination and explanation of Title II of the bill, the Do Not Track Kids Act of 2015.  The Do Not Track Kids Act of 2015 amends the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (“COPPA”) by making its protections more expansive… Continue Reading

House to Hold Hearing on Internet of Things

Posted in Congress, United States

Next Tuesday, March 24 at 11 a.m., the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade will host a hearing entitled “The Internet of Things: Exploring the Next Technology Frontier.”  The hearing will follow an Internet of Things (“IoT”) showcase featuring Internet-connected products manufactured in members’ districts. Congress already has begun taking… Continue Reading

Covington at #SXSW 2015: Members of Congress Discuss Future of Privacy

Posted in Congress, United States

Although Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) may have received the most attention for his attendance at South by Southwest (“SXSW”) Interactive, many other members of Congress were represented this year.  Continuing our coverage of the conference, this past weekend we attended a panel on “The Future of Privacy,” featuring congressional representatives Darrell Issa (R-CA), Suzan DelBene… Continue Reading

Solicitor General Urges Supreme Court To Leave Spokeo Ruling In Place

Posted in Litigation

In the closely-watched case of Spokeo, Inc. v Robins, the Solicitor General recently filed an amicus brief urging the Court to deny certiorari and leave in place the 9th Circuit’s holding, which could encourage the rising tide of privacy class action litigation.  The Solicitor General’s brief—coauthored by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau—argued that the dissemination… Continue Reading

Covington at #SXSW 2015: MIT Professors “Tackle Privacy”

Posted in United States

South by Southwest (“SXSW”) Interactive kicked off last week, and Covington was there once again to cover privacy.  One panel of interest that we attended, entitled “Data (in)Security: MIT Scientists Tackle Privacy,” featured MIT professors Danny Weitzner, Ronald Rivest, and Sam Madden discussing their current research and related privacy issues.  All three hail from MIT’s Computer… Continue Reading

FTC Announces November Workshop on Cross-Device Tracking

Posted in Federal Trade Commission, United States

As the FTC continues to explore the Internet of Things (“IoT”) and IoT devices, today the agency announced that it will host a workshop in November on the topic of cross-device tracking.  Recognizing that today’s typical consumer daily uses a variety of connected devices while simultaneously interacting with numerous platforms, software applications, service providers, and… Continue Reading

Bipartisan Data Security Bill Put Forth For Review

Posted in Congress, United States

By Lala Qadir A bipartisan data security bill was unveiled last week as part of a renewed push to create standardized requirements around data breach and security issues.  Both co-sponsors of the bill, Representative Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and Representative Peter Welch (D-VT), are members of the House Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade, and Blackburn… Continue Reading

Congressional Privacy Bill: Data Breach Notice Provisions

Posted in Congress, United States

By Caleb Skeath As we reported last this week, the Congressional Privacy Bill (S. 547/H.R. 1053) contains provisions that would establish a national data breach notice law, along with the Commercial Privacy Rights Act of 2015 and the Do Not Track Kids Act of 2015.  Following our analysis of the Commercial Privacy Rights Act, we… Continue Reading

Congressional Privacy Bill: Commercial Privacy Rights Act of 2015

Posted in Congress, United States

By Caleb Skeath As we reported yesterday, the Congressional Privacy Bill has been released, following the release of the White House’s proposal for a privacy bill in late February.  The bill contains the Commercial Privacy Rights Act of 2015, the Congressional counterpart to the White House’s proposal, along with data breach notification provisions and the… Continue Reading

Military Cybersecurity Hearing Discusses Cyber Threats, Information Sharing

Posted in Congress, United States

By Caleb Skeath This past Wednesday, the House Armed Services Committee’s Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities held a hearing on military cybersecurity issues.  The hearing focused on the most pressing cyber threats to the nation’s security, as well as the need to grow the military’s cybersecurity workforce while maintaining high levels of skill and… Continue Reading

FCC Chairman Speaks at Industry Event for First Time Since Net Neutrality Vote

Posted in Federal Communications Commission, United States

Following Mark Zuckerberg’s opening keynote at Mobile World Congress on Monday, Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) Chairman Tom Wheeler took the stage yesterday.  As Wheeler’s first public appearance at an industry event since the FCC’s landmark vote last week to enforce net neutrality, the keynote was expected to be closely followed by global counterparts, and InsidePrivacy… Continue Reading

NTIA Seeks Comment on Drone Privacy; Markey and Welch Introduce Drone Privacy Bill

Posted in United States

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration today requested public comment on privacy issues related to the use of drones, or unmanned aircraft systems (“UAS”).  The request came a day after two members of Congress introduced a bill that would impose significant privacy restrictions on drone operators. The NTIA request is a result of a Feb…. Continue Reading

Wyndham Oral Argument: Third Circuit Expresses Doubt About FTC’s Data Security Authority

Posted in Federal Trade Commission

Today, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit heard oral arguments in FTC v. Wyndham Worldwide Corp. The court focused on several themes: First, whether Congress has entrusted the FTC to define new unfair practices, whether the FTC has declared that unreasonable cybersecurity practices are unfair, and whether the FTC is asking the… Continue Reading