The meaning of an “automatic telephone dialing system” (“ATDS”) as defined by the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”) has been hotly contested since the D.C. Circuit invalidated the prior Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) rulings interpreting the TCPA in 2018. The Ninth Circuit has held that merely calling numbers from a stored list is sufficient to meet the definition of an ATDS, while the Third Circuit has at least indicated that the ability to generate numbers randomly or sequentially is the defining characteristic.
Continue Reading Good News for TCPA Defendants

The District Court for the District of Columbia recently invalidated certain Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) rules regarding an individual’s access to their protected health information (“PHI”). The Court held that: (1) individuals can only direct their electronic PHI to third parties (and not hard copy PHI); and (2) the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (“HIPAA”) Omnibus Rule provisions regarding the caps on fees that HIPAA-covered entities may charge for such requests did not follow relevant administrative law procedures.
Continue Reading District Court Limits HIPAA Right of Access

As reported on our Hunton Retail Law Resource blog, on January 7, 2020, the Federal Trade Commission announced a settlement with Mortgage Solutions FCS, Inc., and its sole principal, Ramon Walker, to resolve allegations that the lender violated the FTC Act, the Fair Credit Reporting Act and the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, by improperly disseminating consumers’ personal information on Yelp in response to consumers’ negative reviews posted to that site.
Continue Reading Mortgage Broker Settles FTC Privacy Charges That It Improperly Disclosed Consumer Information on Review Site

On January 6, 2020, the Federal Trade Commission announced that it granted final approval to a settlement with InfoTrax Systems, L.C. and its former CEO, Mark Rawlins, related to allegations that InfoTrax failed to implement reasonable, low-cost and readily available security safeguards to protect the personal information the company maintained on behalf of its business clients.

Continue Reading FTC Finalizes Settlement with InfoTrax for Failure to Safeguard Consumer Data

The U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released joint guidance on the application of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 Privacy Rule to student records.
Continue Reading Department of Education and Department of Health and Human Services Release First Update to Joint Guidance on FERPA and HIPAA Since 2008

On December 18, 2019, the House Energy and Commerce Committee released a bipartisan staff-level draft privacy bill. The bill would create a new Bureau of Privacy within the Federal Trade Commission to enforce the bill and an Office of Business Mentorship to assist companies with compliance.
Continue Reading House Energy and Commerce Committee Staff Release Bipartisan Draft Privacy Bill