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D.C. Lawmakers Again Tackle Cyberthreats

On June 17, 2014, Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Vice Chairman Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) released a draft bill entitled, The Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act of 2014. Given the increasing...more

Why patent reform won’t wait for Congressional action

Last month, after repeated delays and countless compromises, Sen. Patrick Leahy took the Senate’s version of comprehensive patent reform legislation off the calendar — dashing the hopes of those seeking reform without even a...more

Chemical Facility Safety and Security Working Group Issues Report Summarizing Progress on Improving

In April 2013, an explosion destroyed a fertilizer plant in West, Texas, killing 15. In response to this and other recent catastrophic and fatal incidents at chemical facilities, President Obama on August 1, 2013, issued...more

Proposed Ban on Non-Competes in Massachusetts

Proposed legislation introduced by Governor Patrick to eliminate most forms of non-competition agreement in Massachusetts may be enacted before July 31, 2014. This legislation creates significant risks for employers with...more

Senate Judiciary Committee Plans Geo-Location Tracking Hearing

The Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Privacy, Technology and the Law has announced it will hold a hearing on June 4, 2014, regarding the Location Privacy Protection Act of 2014....more

Anti-Patent Troll Legislation Moves Forward in North Carolina

Just over a week into the new session of the North Carolina General Assembly, legislation aimed at the abusive assertion of patent infringement claims by “patent trolls” may be gaining traction, with a bill apparently headed...more

Bad Times for Patent Trolls: What the Government Is Doing to Protect Small Businesses

Patent assertion entities—‘‘PAEs’’ or, if you are in a bad mood, ‘‘patent trolls’’—have been around in one form or another for decades. In the past few years, however, their ranks have grown. According to a U.S. Government...more

Will the Cybersecurity Framework Create a New Standard Operating Procedure for Businesses?

On February 12, 2013, President Barack Obama issued Executive Order 13636 (EO 13636) entitled “Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity.”EO 13636 noted the importance of cybersecurity for the nation’s security and...more

Congress Steps Up Efforts to Pass Cybersecurity Legislation

Congress has been trying for several years to pass cybersecurity legislation, and the number of bills hitting the hopper has increased steadily over recent months. Nearly half a dozen bills have been introduced since January...more

House Energy And Commerce Subcommittee Holds Hearing On Revised Chemicals In Commerce Act

On April 29, 2014, the U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce's Subcommittee on Environment and the Economy held a hearing on the revised version of the Chemicals in Commerce Act (CICA2). Details of the hearing provided...more

"US Government Announces Ban on High-Technology Exports to Russia and Crimea"

On April 28, 2014, as part of its evolving response to the situation in Ukraine, the White House announced new restrictions on exports of “high-technology” items and services to Russia and Crimea. The announcement also...more

White House Issues Two Big Data Reports; Florida Legislature Passes Revamped Breach Notification Law

Yesterday, May 1, was a big day for privacy in the news. The White House issued 2 reports on the privacy implications of Big Data, and the Florida legislature overhauled the state’s security breach notification law,...more

New G-7 Sanctions Against Russia

The United States, in coordination with other G-7 nations, announced on Monday, April 28 new sanctions on individuals and entities with ties to the Russian government and President Putin. The newly announced sanctions build...more

What’s the best way to improve the odds in patent troll litigation?

One can hardly talk about the patent law or patent litigation anymore without addressing the issue of patent assertion entities (PAEs). PAEs develop nothing, make nothing, distribute nothing, and sell nothing. They exist to...more

Target Becomes a Target: Proposed California Bill Aims to Make Retailers Liable for Data Breach Incidents

Following a string of high-profile data breaches and new data suggesting that approximately 21.3 million customer accounts have been exposed by data breach incidents over the past two years, the California legislature has...more

Real OFAC Policy Changes Toward Iran—OFAC will consider non Ag/Med exports

As a new round of nuclear talks involving American, European, and Iranian leaders commence this week in Vienna it appears that the first-step deal agreed upon in January has already led to significant changes in OFAC’ s...more

Stopping Bad Legislation -- The Innovation Alliance Speaks Out

On the day before the Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to take up S. 1720 (The Patent Transparency and Improvements Act), the Innovation Alliance delivered a letter to Chairman Leahy and Ranking Member Grassley...more

NIST Issues Cybersecurity Framework

On February 12, 2014, the Obama administration released the "Framework for Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity" (the "Framework"), a voluntary cybersecurity framework developed by the National Institute of...more

Congress Steps Up its Scrutiny of Data Brokers

In keeping with Congress’s heightened focus on privacy practices in the data broker industry, Senators Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) and Ed Markey (D-Mass.) introduced a bill that would require increased transparency and...more

Capital Thinking: Cybersecurity

Data Breach - This week, several Congressional Committees will hold a number of hearings focused on the recent data breaches at Target, Neiman Marcus and other large companies that compromised the financial information...more

High Profile Security Breaches Spur Congressional Action

Recently, several large retailers, including Target and Neiman Marcus, announced that hackers had compromised credit card and other personal consumer data. At Target, 40 million debt and credit cards were impacted and the...more

House and Senate Committees to Hold Data Breach Hearings in February

In the wake of recent data breaches at major retailers Target and Neiman Marcus, Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) has renewed his efforts to enact stronger data security requirements for companies that collect...more

Cybersecurity Update: Are Data Breach Disclosure Requirements on Target?

As discussed in Akin Gump’s annual “Top Ten Topics for Directors in 2014,” cybersecurity and data privacy are indeed among the hottest topics in the boardroom this year due to the dramatic rise in cyber attacks and data...more

Insurance Coverage for Cyber Attacks

Thefts of trade secrets through cyber espionage and cyber harassment through distributed denial of service attacks have been business hazards for years. Cyber security insurance policies to guard against these threats have...more

Prospects on Germany's Digital Landscape in the Next Four Years: What Does the Coalition Agreement Say on Technology?

Following the German federal election on September 22, 2013, the Christian Democratic Party, the Christian Social Union and the Social Democratic Party decided to take up coalition talks for the formation of a new government...more

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