Erik S. Syverson
Erik Syverson is a leading Internet and technology attorney. He co-chairs the Firm’s Internet and Digital Media Practice Group. Erik is ranked a Band 1 attorney for defamation and reputation management by Chambers and Partners. Additionally, he has been named a ‘Super Lawyer’ by Super Lawyers magazine every year since 2012, a distinction given annually to less than 2.5 percent of attorneys in California. In addition to his extensive litigation and trial experience, national news media organizations frequently turn to Erik for analysis of contemporary Internet law issues including CNBC, FOX NEWS, THE HUFFINGTON POST, THE NFL NETWORK, THE LOS ANGELES TIMES and CNN.
Erik handles litigation related to digital media, data breach events, advertising, intellectual property, theft of trade secrets and defamation. He primarily represents privately held companies, small-cap public companies, corporate officers, professional service providers and high net worth individuals. His cases often involve cutting edge business models that require innovative strategies and solutions. He believes the best way to achieve victory is by aggressively preparing for trial from the outset of a case.
The Internet has unleashed an avalanche of defamation in the last decade. Erik has represented dozens of corporate executives, entertainers and high net worth individuals in Internet defamation cases. In such cases, Erik provides a comprehensive strategy focused upon unmasking the source of anonymous Internet defamation by utilizing the litigation process to remove false information from the Internet. Erik’s efforts have resulted in numerous jury verdicts and confidential settlements providing for monetary damages and the permanent removal of defamatory Internet content.
A veteran of data privacy law, Erik counsels and prepares clients for breach events. This includes employee training, data mapping, vulnerability testing and vendor review. When breach events occur, companies and insurance carriers retain Erik’s team to coordinate the breach response including state by state notification procedures. Erik has experience interfacing with many federal and state agencies regarding breach events including the California Attorney General, the FBI, the FTC and the US Attorney.
Often data breach events are accompanied by the misappropriation of trade secrets. Erik has handled dozens of trade secrets lawsuits related to data breach events including unauthorized access to company servers, customer lists and databases.
Erik and his team frequently defend e-commerce companies and executives in FTC enforcement actions related to allegations of false advertising. He understands how to effectively defend such actions often when his clients have had assets frozen pursuant to a temporary restraining order. Erik has helped dozens of clients enter into effective settlement agreements with the FTC that allow the client to move on and remain successful in business.
Erik litigates and advises Internet companies with regard to federal and state statutes such as Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, the Anti-cybersquatting Consumer Protection Act, the Consumer Fraud & Abuse Act, the Lanham Act, the Computer Fraud Act, the Wiretap Act, and the Stored Communications Act. Additionally, Erik advises clients on international Internet regulations, particularly European privacy and intellectual property laws.
In a number of cases, Erik has successfully defended user-generated content sites by invoking the Communications Decency Act and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. His successful application of such defenses and immunities has resulted in numerous early dismissals or favorable settlements of lawsuits for defamation and intellectual property infringement. Erik frequently handles cases arising under the Lanham Act including claims related to contributory trademark and counterfeiting liability for Internet service providers. Erik also represents national consumer brands in the food and apparel industries in enforcement actions for infringement and dilution claims.
Erik’s team has expertise defending class actions in California related to claims of unfair business practices, false advertising and violations of California’s Consumers Legal Remedies Act. Most of Erik’s cases in this area relate to new technology and allegations of product failures.
J.D., Loyola Law School, Los Angeles, California, 2002
B.A., University of Michigan, 1998
History, Michigan Honors Student
All Federal District Courts for the State of California
- Represented a European mobile gaming company in a federal copyright infringement lawsuit against a Chinese video game company. Erik and his team defeated the defendant’s motion to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction. Erik then proved during discovery that the defendant made millions of dollars in illicit profits by hacking into and copying protected source code from Plaintiff’s game. Defendants then decided to settle the case for a significant sum of money prior to trial.
- Unmasked dozens of perpetrators of anonymous Internet defamation, hacking and impersonation for celebrities, executives and high net worth individuals. Recently on behalf of one of the world’s most iconic movie stars.
- Defended one of the world’s largest internet service providers from contributory counterfeiting and trademark infringement claims brought by a consortium of European luxury goods manufacturers including Cartier and Montblanc. Erik and his team successfully defeated Plaintiffs’ motion for summary judgment for what would have been a record sum of $150,000,000. The case then settled for $72,000.
- Defended global affiliate network from trademark infringement claims brought by national pay day lender. Plaintiff sought damages in excess of $5,000,000. After conducting limited discovery, Erik negotiated a consent judgment whereby Erik’s client paid no damages and obtained a dismissal with prejudice.
- Obtained a judgment in the District Court of Nevada in excess of $1,000,000 for a private equity firm that had been fraudulently induced to invest in a failed scrap metal recycling firm.
- Coordinated data breach response for international apparel company.
- Representation of a class of internet pay per click advertisers on IAC/Interactive Corp.’s network. Obtained certification of the national class and secured a seven figure settlement shortly thereafter.
- Privacy and data security counsel to a national financial services company.
- Defended an outdoor advertising company at trial on a multi- million dollar breach of lease claim by a national automobile dealership. Obtained a complete defense verdict after three week trial and secured a seven figure award of attorney fees which was upheld on appeal.
- Prevailed in a jury trial on behalf of a law firm partner who had been defamed via anonymous emails sent to his law firm partners. Erik and his team engaged in extensive discovery in order to prove the identity of the defendant, who happened to be the boyfriend of the plaintiff’s ex-wife. After a five day trial, the jury awarded Erik’s client six figures in punitive damages, in addition to general damages for emotional distress.
- Defended national newspaper from claims of copyright infringement by photo agency seeking in excess of $1,000,000 in damages. After conducting discovery and advancing a fair use defense, Erik forced the plaintiff to enter into a settlement on favorable terms.
- Secured the dismissal of over $400,000,000 in intervenor claims brought in the Northern District of Illinois against several real estate investors and executives. The claims related to a failed commercial real estate investment fund seeking to purchase several mall properties throughout the Midwest.
- In an international dispute involving ex-hedge fund partners, secured favorable settlement of actions pending in San Francisco, New York and Delaware.
- January 2017 - Data Breach Law for Intellectual Property Practitioners: California State Bar Annual Meeting.
- Decemer 2014 - Privacy roundtable: California Lawyers Magazine.
- March 2014 - Introduction of Digital Evidence at Trial: Pasadena Bar Association.
- February 2014 - Contributory Liability for Internet Service Providers in Trademark Infringement and Counterfeiting Cases: California State Bar Cyberlaw Committee.
- December 2013 - Internet Defamation Litigation Basics: Thomson Reuters litigation webcast series.
- August 2012 - Unmasking John Doe Defendants in Internet Defamation Cases: California State Bar Cyberlaw Committee.
- Dr. Anthony Hui v. Does 1-25, San Francisco Sup. Ct. Case No. CGC-10-405968
- Direct Transfers v. Timeshare Relief, et al., Los Angeles Sup. Ct. Case No. BC446420
- Connelly v. Zuckerman, Orange County Superior Court Case No. 30-2011-00453171
- Bleyer v. Marchant, Miami Dade (FL) County Circuit Court Case No. 2011-7256-CA-01-13
- Emerging Growth Research, LLC v. Does 1 through 25, San Francisco Superior Court, Case No. CGC 11-507114
- Edon Moyal, Colin Nix, Regis Possino v. Bryan Keith Hawker, et al., LASC Case No. BC 463 286
- Beverly Hills Surgery Center et al. v. Does 1-100, Los Angeles Superior Court Case No. 451267
- Commercial Credit Consultants, LLC. v. Grossnickle, LASC Case No. BC 461 055
- Hardeep Singh Lochab v. Does 1 through 25, Los Angeles Superior Court Case No. BC 464594
- Judith Gabales v. Does 1 – 25, LASC Case No. BC470673
- Nathan D. Frankel v. Does 1 through 25, inclusive, Los Angeles County Superior Court, Case No. BC478578
- Richard Gary Enterprises, dba The Gary Group v. Does, U.S. District Court, C.D. California, Case No. CV 12-0142
- Dean Mansfield v. Does 1 through 25, inclusive, Los Angeles County Superior Court, Case No. BC486422
- Brand and Brand v. Dorin, Orange County Sup. Ct. Case No. 30-2012-00586522-CU-DF-CJC
- Alpine Pictures Inc. et al v. Michael Consoli et al., Maricopa County (AZ) Sup. Ct. Case No CV2013-052826
- Mad Catz Interactive v. Does 2 – 20, San Diego Sup. Ct. Case No. 37-2013-00030075-CU-BT-CTL
- Jaime and Daniel Charboneau v. Does 1 through 25, inclusive, Los Angeles County Superior Court, Case No. BC513472
- Rafati v. Does, LASC Case No. BC 509261 Meishon v. Meislik, Orange County Sup. Ct. Case No. 30-2014-00700334
- Fox News Internet Law Expert, Over Ten Telveision Appearances.
- “Is Social Media Entitled to Trade Secret Protection?”, Daily Journal, February 13, 2012
- “Is Farmville Just a Game, or Big Brother in Disguise?”, Huffington Post, October 22, 2010
- “The Coming Wave of Social Media Class Actions” Huffington Post, September 2, 2010
Professional & Bar Association Memberships
Chambers and Partners Band 1 Attorney
California State Bar Cyberlaw
Los Angeles County Bar Association
Beverly Hills Bar Association
American Bar Association