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The Privacy and Security Law Blog The Privacy and Security Law Blog

Daily analysis of data security and privacy issues.

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Last Entry: August 26, 2014 at 13:38:06

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FTC Seeks Public Comment on AgeCheq, Inc.?s Proposed Parental Consent Method under COPPA

Posted on August 26, 2014
The Federal Trade Commission announced Monday that it seeks public comment on a new verifiable parental consent method application proposed by AgeCheq, Inc., to enable apps, websites and advertisers to obtain parental consent to collect children?s personal information...

In Flight Catalog: Senator Rockefeller Opens Inquiry Into Consumer Data Practices by Airlines

Posted on August 25, 2014
Last week, Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) sent a letter to the top ten revenue generating passenger airlines in the United States, opening an inquiry into their practices related to charging additional fees for optional services and the collection of consumer data...

When Does Texting Become Autodialing?

Posted on August 21, 2014
Seventh Circuit Provided Opportunity to Consider Just What ?Capacity? Equipment Must have to Fall Within TCPA Restrictions The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit could entertain arguments on what ?capacity? equipment must have to be considered an autodialer under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA)...

Consumer Privacy Legislation? All Sides Weigh In But Remain Far Apart in the Big Debate Over Big Data

Posted on August 15, 2014
Recent comments filed by various stakeholders in response to the U.S. Commerce Department?s National Telecommunications and Information Administration?s (NTIA) Request for Public Comment (RFC) on ?Big Data and Consumer Privacy in the Internet Economy,? evidence a wide rift between consumer groups and most business interests regarding the need for additional consumer privacy law in the era of Big Data...

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FTC Undertakes Period Rule Review of Telemarketing Sales Rule

Posted on August 11, 2014
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has published in the Federal Register a Request for Comments on all aspects of its Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR) as part of a routine review of the effectiveness, costs and benefits of its rules. Though the Request for Comments targets several TSR issues in particular (discussed below), it views the review as assessing generally whether the Rule is serving a ?useful purpose,? and whether it can be improved to reflect changes in the marketplace since it was previously amended in 2003, 2008 and 2010...

COPPA?s ?Safe Harbor? Grows with FTC?s Approval of iKeepSafe?s Self-Regulating Framework

Posted on August 08, 2014
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has announced that it approved iKeepSafe?s Safe Harbor Program application, allowing the company?s self-regulating framework to serve as a safe harbor under the Children?s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) and the COPPA Rule...

Pass or Fail? Sens. Markey and Hatch Introduce ?Protecting Student Privacy Act? Seeking to Amend FERPA, Increase Protection of Student PII Shared with Private Companies

Posted on August 05, 2014
On July 30, 2014, Sen. Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., made good on his earlier promise to beef up the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) to provide heightened protections for student educational records shared with private companies...

FTC Examines Pre-Download Consumer Disclosures of Mobile Shopping Applications; Makes Recommendations Applicable to All Consumer Data

Posted on August 05, 2014
Continuing its examination of consumer protection issues in the mobile payments sphere, on August 1, 2014, the FTC released a staff report examining the pre-download disclosures of mobile shopping applications to evaluate the information provided to consumers about: (1) their rights and protections in the event of a payment dispute; and (2) how their personal data will be collected, used, shared, and secured...

DWT Advisory: Rhode Island Hospital?s Breach of Health Information Leads to Settlement with Massachusetts Attorney General

Posted on August 05, 2014
On July 23, 2014, the Massachusetts attorney generalannounceda settlement with Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island (WIH) over the loss of unencrypted backup tapes. WIH agreed to pay $150,000 and undertake numerous compliance measures, including hiring an independent auditor, to resolve allegations that it failed to protect the personal information (PI) and protected health information (PHI) of more than 12,000 Massachusetts patients under HIPAA and Massachusetts? data security law...

FACTA Class Actions

Posted on July 30, 2014
In the July 2014 issues of The Review of Banking & Financial Services, DWT payments team members Burt Braverman and Micah Ratner wrote about the truncation requirement of FACTA, whichhas spawned a wave of class action litigation with potentially ruinous damages for ?willful? violations...

U.S. District Court Dismisses Privacy Class Actions against Viacom, Google

Posted on July 25, 2014
Google and Viacom?s Nick.com, Nickjr.com, and Neopets.com off the hook ? for now On July 2, 2014, New Jersey Federal District Judge Stanley R. Chesler dismissed six consolidated MDL class actions challenging Viacom?s and Google?s practice of installing cookies on personal computers that were used by children to access three Nickelodeon websites...

FTC Updates COPPA FAQs Again ? Revisions to Part H Gives App Developers and Parents Welcomed Clarification on Parental Consent

Posted on July 23, 2014
Continuing our Blog?s updates on the Federal Trade Commission?s Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to the updated Children?s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) Rule, we highlight that the FTC revised three portions of ?Part H? this week, which concern how entities seeking to comply with COPPA may obtain verifiable parental consent...

FCC Letter Brief to Second Circuit Narrowly Construes Recent TCPA Guidance

Posted on July 08, 2014
We reported last spring on two FCC declaratory rulings, GroupMe and Cargo Airline, that included some broad, business-friendly interpretations of rules implementing the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), under which plaintiff class actions are thriving...

DWT Advisory: New HIPAA Reports to Congress Shed Light on OCR Enforcement

Posted on July 03, 2014
The Department of Health and Human Services? Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has issued two reports to Congress, as required by the HITECH Act. Thecompliance reportdetails OCR?s enforcement activities for 2011 and 2012 and sheds light on what covered entities and business associates can expect from OCR going forward...

Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council Launches Cybersecurity Webpage and Begins Cybersecurity Assessments

Posted on July 01, 2014
?For cyber criminals, banks are especially tempting targets ? not only because banks are where the money is, but also because of the vast amount of proprietary information banks have about their customers.? Thomas J. Curry, Comptroller of the Currency In comments before the Risk Management Association?s Governance, Compliance, and Operational Risk Conference last month, Thomas J...

FTC Releases 2014 Privacy and Data Security Update, Touting Its Efforts and Achievements in Protecting Consumer Privacy

Posted on July 01, 2014
Last week, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) released its 2014 Privacy and Data Security Update, summarizing the FTC?s major enforcement actions, policy initiatives, rules, reports, workshops, and outreach efforts in the privacy and data security arenas from approximately January 2013 until March 2014...

??Because That?s Where the Money Is.? OCC Head Highlights Oversight of Cybersecurity for Financial Industry?Will All Vendors Cooperate?

Posted on June 30, 2014
Why are banks often tempting targets for criminals and terrorists alike? Thomas Curry, the head of the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), recently reminded us: ??because that?s where the money is.? But what most worries the Comptroller is not a modern-day Bonnie & Clyde or John Dillinger attacking banks from without, but rather scofflaws, ?hacktivists,? terrorists and foreign regimes exploiting vulnerabilities in the financial industry?s cybersecurity and striking from within...

U.S. Steps Up Efforts to Make ?Safe Harbor Safe Again? ? FTC, Justice Department Work to Keep EU Happy and Avoid Pull Back from Safe Harbor

Posted on June 27, 2014
Within the span of two days, both the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the U.S. Department of Justice announced initiatives meant to assuage the European Union?s concerns over trans-Atlantic data flows and to secure Europe?s future commitment to the U...

Managing Risk in an Inhospitable Environment: The Restaurant and Hospitality Industries are an Alluring Destination for Cyber Thieves

Posted on June 19, 2014
The recent onslaught of cybersecurity incidents and payment card thefts dominate daily headlines and have captured the nation?s attention?from the diner whose credit card was compromised during a data breach to the President of the United States who recently advocated passage of national data breach legislation: everyone has a stake in this issue...

?Getting to Know You, Getting to Know All About You?? FTC Data Brokers Report Calls for More Industry Transparency, Regulation in How Data Brokers Use Consumers? Personal Information

Posted on June 19, 2014
?You may not know them, but data brokers know you,? Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chairwoman Edith Ramirez said when she announced the release of the Commission?s newest report on the data broker industry. And in the FTC?s opinion, Congress and the data brokerage industry need to take concerted action to bring transparency to the industry, protect consumers? personally identifiable information (PII), and prevent abuse and discrimination...

Department of Energy Invites Cybersecurity Comments

Posted on June 19, 2014
In a Federal Register notice to be officially published Friday, June 20, 2014, the Department of Energy (DOE) is inviting public participation in its efforts to develop a guidance document entitled ?Energy Sector Framework Implementation Guidance.? The term ?Framework? references the Framework for Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity which was released by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) on February 12, 2014...

Government Officials Continue to Reference NIST Framework

Posted on June 18, 2014
On Thursday, June 12, 2014, while delivering remarks on cybersecurity at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C., Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler challenged businesses to be more proactive in addressing increasingly prevalent threats to their cybersecurity, urging them to embrace a ?new paradigm? in which the private sector takes the lead and regulators step in to address shortcomings...

SEC Commissioner Calls on Corporate Boards to Address Cybersecurity?Refers to NIST Cyber Framework as ?the Bible?

Posted on June 11, 2014
While attending the “Cyber Risks and the Boardroom” Conference at the New York Stock Exchange on Tuesday, June 10, 2014, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commissioner Luis Aguilar called on corporate boards to make sure they are taking the necessary steps to address and oversee their companies? cybersecurity risks...

UPDATE on Breslow v. Wells Fargo ? Same as the Old Boss: Eleventh Circuit Withdraws Opinion Just Four Days Later, But to Little Practical Effect

Posted on June 10, 2014
Just a few days ago, we reported on the Eleventh Circuit?s decision in Breslow v. Wells Fargo, which reaffirmed precedent that strict liability can arise in autodialer, prerecorded-message and texting suits under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), if a caller or texter obtained consent from the intended recipient, but that party?s cell number was … Continue Reading

Summertime Blues: Eleventh Circuit Doubles Down on Strict TCPA Liability for Texts and Autodialed and Prerecorded Calls to Cell Phones

Posted on June 06, 2014
Over the Spring,we reported on how the Eleventh Circuit?s decision in Osorio v. State Farm brought that court into alignment with the Seventh Circuit on how restrictions in the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) on automated and/or prerecorded calls and texts to cell phones can effectively impose strict liability, even if a calling party believed … Continue Reading

Only 4 Weeks Until Canada?s New Anti-Spam Rules Come into Force

Posted on June 05, 2014
Provisions Have Implications for US, Global Businesses Starting on July 1, 2014, key provisions of Canada?s Anti-Spam Law (CASL) governing commercial electronic messages (CEMs) will go into effect, per our advisory thoroughly analyzing CASL. The statute and its implementing rules generally prohibit sending CEMs without the recipient?s express consent, and as noted in the advisory, … Continue Reading

Stolen Patient Information on Hospital Computer Not Considered ?Medical Information? by California Appellate Court

Posted on May 28, 2014
The California Court of Appeal recently held that the release of an index identifying hospital patients did not constitute the release of medical information under California?s Confidentiality of Medical Information Act (CMIA), Civ. Code, 56 et seq...

UK Gives Search Engines Time to Comply With 'Right to Be Forgotten'

Posted on May 23, 2014
By Robert Stankey   The UK data protection watchdog has said that it will give search engines like Google some time to put measures in place to respond to requests to take down links in search results.   On May 20, 2014, the UK Information Commissioner's Office made its first public response to last week's Court of Justice of the European Union decision against Google and its Spanish subsidiary...

UK Gives Search Engines Time to Comply With ?Right to Be Forgotten?

Posted on May 23, 2014
The UK data protection watchdog has said that it will give search engines like Google some time to put measures in place to respond to requests to take down links in search results. On May 20, 2014, the UK Information Commissioner?s Office made its first public response to last week?s Court of Justice of the … Continue Reading

Accident, Technical Failure, or Human Error? FCC's $7.5 Million Settlement with Sprint Indicates Any and All Can Lead to Substantial TCPA Liability

Posted on May 21, 2014
New Consent Decree – the Largest Ever FCC Do-Not-Call Settlement – is Agency's Second Multimillion-Dollar TCPA Enforcement Action in As Many Weeks By Ronald London The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced that it settled a recent investigation of Sprint Corporation for failures to properly implement do-not-call requests and text-message opt-outs received from consumers...

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