Privacy & Data Security

As the number of lawsuits based on claimed violations of the Illinois Biometric Information Protection Act (“BIPA”) increase, litigants have struggled to find guidance from the courts on this new area of law. The Ninth Circuit’s August 8, 2019 decision in Patel v. Facebook, Inc., No. 18-15982 (August 8, 2019) provides slightly more guidance. In Facebook, the Ninth Circuit affirmed the district court’s finding that allegations related to Facebook’s use and storage of “face templates” may violate BIPA. The Ninth Circuit focused on whether the plaintiff’s allegations constitute a concrete and particularized harm sufficient to confer Article III standing under…
The compliance deadline for the California Consumer Privacy Act (“CCPA”) is January 1, 2020. Even though the CCPA is the first privacy law that will directly impact a large number of U.S. businesses, the best strategy for most U.S. businesses will be to take a measured response toward this new law. GDPR Hysteria The General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) has been in effect for more than a year. And, without question, GDPR has impacted privacy law across the world as 59,000 data breaches were reported to the EU supervisory authorities which resulted in the assessment of about 90 penalties since…
The law related to Illinois Biometric Information Protection Act (“BIPA”) came to a halt over the last year or so while the Illinois Supreme Court analyzed what constitutes an injury under the Act. As expected, courts have started to once again visit the various legal issues related to biometric data now that the Rosenbach decision has been issued. Now that BIPA cases are moving through the courts again, one major issue will be what is the proper venue for these cases as many BIPA claims intertwine state and federal laws. The Seventh Circuit recently undertook an analysis of the Illinois…
Douglas Tibble represented the private lender in a $5,000,000 financing of the borrower’s acquisition of a manufacturing business that was a division of a fortune five hundred company. The transaction included securing the financing on the acquired real estate, tangible assets, intellectual property and receivables. After closing the transaction, Doug arranged for limited debt subordination to enable the borrower to secure operational funding from a local bank.…
The increased interest of governments, consumer organizations and lawyers in privacy issues creates new and emphasizes old risks for your business if it violates the privacy of its customers, employees or third parties.  Knowing some of the current areas where your business could have liability can minimize those risks.  Some of the new and newly emphasized areas of privacy protection include: Biometric Information.  Illinois and other states prevent or regulate the collection and use of biometric information of employees, consumers and others, such as fingerprints, photographs and other identification information.  Failure to follow the law can expose your business to…
The current roster of threats–ransomware, phishing schemes and hacking–are well understood at this point. Of course, these threats are constantly evolving as we live in a world where criminals get bored quickly and need to move on. The newest privacy threat may involve elaborately faked videos, called “deepfakes,” which may be used to disparage people. A manipulated video of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi recently went viral was slowed down to make it appear she was slurring her words following a meeting with President Donald Trump. This incident was the first time the public came face to face with this new…
It is a pivotal moment when the United States Supreme Court addresses data breach cases. There was a time when people said that cyber security would be like “Y2K” and any preparations for cyber issues would suffer the same embarrassing fate as buying a generator to prepare for “Y2K.” There is no need to get too emotional, but there is no reasonable dispute that privacy issues are now just a part of our lives. April 24, 2019 is a watershed moment in privacy law when the U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision in Lamps Plus, Inc. v. Varela, 2019 1780275 (April
While the United States may not have data protections in place that are as extensive as those seen the European Union’s adoption of GDPR, there is still a comprehensive framework of state and federal regulations in place to protect personal information. Many industries are building on the foundation set by state and federal guidelines by creating industry-specific cyber standards. For example, various organizations in the insurance industry are taking steps to ensure their members have guidance on cyber security. The Insurance Industry’s Data Protection Standards The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (“NAIC”), an organization that coordinates the efforts of…
Millions of mobile phone, bank and investment customers now use fingerprint readers, eye scans, and voice recognition technologies as security and privacy enhancing technologies.  Biometric information can provide more security than a password, however, once biometric data is compromised, a person cannot change fingerprints or voice tones like they could a password. The Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act, 740 ILCS 14/1 (2008), regulates the collection, use, safeguarding and storage of biometric identifiers and information by private businesses.  The Illinois law imposes the strictest protections and limits on the use of this information in the United States. The Illinois Supreme Court…
Welcome to our new website. It provides easier access to our attorneys, practice areas, recent successes and our ongoing law blog that contains insights on current legal, business and personal issues that we think can be valuable to our clients and friends.  We have also updated our firm Facebook and LinkedIn pages to provide easier access to our firm and attorneys, and to continue to provide timely and valuable information and insights.  Our monthly Business Brief and timely Business Bulletins will not only be published on our website but sent in an electronic form that is more easily shared with your…
Protecting against cyber attacks requires coordination between data collectors and their vendors who assist in protecting that data.  Typically, vendors include public relations professionals, forensic experts and security experts to assist after the breach.  It is important to keep in mind that a vendor’s work may be controlled through contracts or agreements that place a number of obligations on a data collector.  That is, in order to receive the vendors’ assistance, a data collector may have to agree to various conditions including indemnifying the vendor and having all disputes resolved through arbitration.  In short, data collectors will need to be fully…
No matter how many employees, agents, partners or others that have authority to bind your business to purchase or sale contracts, you can still take steps to protect your business by ensuring that all contracts are subject to the same standard terms and conditions approved by you.  But, once your standard terms and conditions are approved, you need to ensure that all purchase orders, invoices and other contract documents incorporate them.  Standard terms and conditions can be printed on the back of invoices and purchase orders; attached to proposals, estimates, offers and acceptances; referenced in other contract documents.  You may…
Biometric data is playing a larger role in employment law as more employers begin using equipment to scan employees’ fingerprints to clock in for work. Each week more employers are defending themselves against claims by the employees such as the class action lawsuit filed against Patriot Medical Transport in Cook County Circuit Court last month. The employees in the Patriot Medical litigation claim they “have suffered injury from the unlawful collection and storage of their fingerprints, hand geometry or other biometric data.” We can expect these class actions to continue to increase with the increased use of equipment that collects…
Eric Wilen spoke at the National Business Institute full day seminar entitled “Step by Step Guide to Drafting Will and Trusts” on Friday, February 9, 2019.  Because of Eric’s expertise in tax, he presented to attorneys, accountants, enrolled agents, trust officers and other professional advisors on the Basic Tax Concerns when drafting wills and trusts. For questions regarding tax and estate planning, please call Eric at (630) 355-2101 or email him at ewilen@NapervilleLaw.com.…
[embedded content] Data breach litigation inherently involves a significant amount of information, so it is no surprise to see discovery issues in breach cases. The typical data breach lawsuit may include discovery requests for pre-breach information (response plans, audits), response information (notification letters and phone scripts) and post breach information (remediation and vendor information).  Suffice it to say, there is ripe opportunity for discovery disputes with this amount of information needing to be exchanged between the parties. The Blue Cross breach, or Premera breach, occurred in 2015 and involved the unauthorized disclosure of confidential information of approximately 11 million current…
While the best business litigation strategy is to avoid litigation or resolve disputes outside of court, including negotiation, mediation or arbitration, once litigation is initiated there are many steps a business can take in conjunction with its lawyer to minimize the delay, cost and collateral damage caused by litigation, regardless of the ultimate outcome.  Some of the ways to make business litigation more efficient and less expensive include: Accelerate the process.  Generally, the quicker you can move the dispute resolution the less it costs.  Proceeding on a fast track forces the parties to be more efficient in preparing for trial,…

Privacy & Data Security Blogs