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Inside Privacy Updates on Developments in Global Privacy & Data Security from Covington & Burling LLP

Category Archives: United States

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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

House Hearing Scheduled on U.S. Military Cyber Operations

Posted in Congress, United States

By Caleb Skeath This Wednesday, the House Armed Services Committee’s Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities will hold a hearing on military cybersecurity issues, entitled “Cyber Operations: Improving the Military Cyber Security Posture in an Uncertain Threat Environment.”  The following witnesses are scheduled to testify at the hearing: Navy Adm. Michael Rodgers, Commander, U.S. Cyber… Continue Reading

White House Privacy Bill: A Deeper Dive

Posted in Advertising & Marketing, Congress, Mobile, Online, Privacy Policies, United States

As we reported earlier today, the long-awaited White House draft of privacy and data security legislation has been released. While the United States does not today have a comprehensive privacy and data security law, the proposed Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights would impose a suite of substantive privacy and data security obligations across sectors and… Continue Reading

White House Privacy Bill Is Released

Posted in Advertising & Marketing, Federal Trade Commission, Mobile, Online

The White House’s much anticipated draft privacy legislation has now been released.   We are digesting its content now and will post an update with some additional comments shortly. The draft appears to include an expansive definition of “personal data.”  In addition, early press reports note that the draft bill would require companies to inform consumers and… Continue Reading

Wyndham: Third Circuit Requests Briefing on Whether FTC Declared Unreasonable Cybersecurity Practices Are ‘Unfair’

Posted in Federal Trade Commission

On February 20, the Third Circuit sent a letter to counsel in FTC v. Wyndham Worldwide Corp., identifying at least one topic that will be addressed in the upcoming oral argument regarding the parties’ dispute over whether the FTC has the authority to regulate companies’ data security practices: whether unreasonable cybersecurity practices are “unfair.” The letter… Continue Reading

D.C. Circuit Hears Oral Arguments in Urban Outfitters ZIP Code Lawsuit

Posted in Litigation, United States

Last week, the D.C. Circuit heard oral argument in the lawsuit filed against Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie over their collection of customer ZIP codes at the point of sale.  The plaintiffs alleged that the practice of requesting ZIP codes at the point of sale during credit card transactions violated two D.C. statutes, the Consumer Protection… Continue Reading

President Obama Signs Executive Order to Encourage Information Sharing

Posted in Cybersecurity, United States

By Caleb Skeath During the White House’s inaugural Summit on Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection last Friday, President Obama signed an executive order designed to facilitate increased information sharing between the private sector and the federal government.  The order follows the introduction of the Cyber Threat Sharing Act of 2015 in the Senate, an information-sharing bill… Continue Reading

Top 10 U.S. Privacy Developments of 2014

Posted in United States

By Jeff Kosseff, Meena Harris, and Caleb Skeath Data Breaches Studies show increase.  Amidst a flurry of high-profile breaches during 2014, several studies confirmed that data breaches as a whole have risen significantly over the past few years.  The California Attorney General released a study showing a 28% increase in breaches in 2013 as compared… Continue Reading

White House Releases Drone Privacy Memorandum

Posted in United States

On Sunday, the White House released a memorandum that outlines privacy protections that federal agencies must take when they use drones, and directs the National Telecommunications and Information Administration to work with the private sector to establish voluntary privacy practices for commercial drone use. The White House issued the memorandum on the same day that… Continue Reading