Internet privacy issues are at the cutting edge of Internet law. Consumers and government regulators are increasingly concerned regarding the vulnerability of personally identifiable information (“PII”) stored on commercial computer networks. Companies engaged in e-commerce must take steps to comply with an increasingly complex web of federal and state data breach statutes. In the event of a data breach, we advise clients regarding proper consumer notification procedures. As Internet law litigators, we defend companies that have been sued for Internet based privacy claims and data breaches.Data Breach Notification Laws
Our legal team offer comprehensive legal advice and strategy regarding proper data breach procedures. At the federal level, the FTC has broad powers to bring actions against companies for failures to maintain reasonable cyber security standards. Companies that have not kept up with data security and encryption technology face potential liability.
Almost every state has a data breach law requiring businesses to notify customers in the event that PII has been accessed or compromised by hackers. In most instances, timely and proper consumer notification of a data breach provides a safe harbor against liability. Many states, including California, require companies to notify state government officials and provide consumers with access to credit reporting data. In a state like Texas, failure to provide proper notification can result in liability of up to $250,000 for a single data breach. It is critical for businesses to understand the various state law data breach notification requirements.
If your company has had its customer data compromised through a breach, please give us a call to consult with Internet law team of data breach defense attorneys.Data Breach Litigation Defense Attorneys
In recent years, a slew of Internet privacy class action lawsuits have been filed against companies in various industries. These cases usually follow a notice of data breach and seek millions of dollars in damages.
As Internet law litigators, we defend companies that have been sued for Internet privacy violations and data breaches. There are a number of key defenses available in such cases. Additionally, we closely monitor developing Internet privacy appellate decisions and utilize such decisions for our clients’ strategic advantage.
In addition to data breach consumer class actions, we are often retained to defend individual claims of data breach. These claims typically arise in the context of a trade secrets case where former employees have accessed company data via a computer network. Another common data breach scenario occurs during divorce proceedings when parties thereto access emails or otherwise commit cyber snooping offenses.
Data breach claims in such scenarios are typically brought under one of three statutes. The first, the Stored Communications Act, penalizes the unauthorized access of stored communications which are typically emails. This federal statute provides for injunctive relief, reasonable attorneys’ fees, statutory or actual damages and punitive damages for intentional violations.
Another commonly deployed federal computer privacy statute is the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. This statute prohibits accessing a protected computer without authorization that causes damages in excess of $5,000. The damages can include remediation cost. This claim typically involves the access of password protected computers and/or the deployment of keylogging software. No attorneys’ fees are available for the victorious party. Finally, in California, the Comprehensive Computer Data Access and Fraud Act prohibits unauthorized access of computers, computer systems or computer networks. The damages include compensatory and injunctive relief plus attorneys’ fees and punitive damages for willful violations.