On November 3, 2017, Securityroundtable.org published an article highlighting the vulnerabilities businesses face in a world of e-commerce and interconnectivity, and spotlighted a crisis-planning panel hosted by Hunton & Williams held on November 1. Speakers at the event included Lisa Sotto, chair of the Global Privacy and Cybersecurity practice at Hunton & Williams; Eric Friedberg, Co-President of Stroz Friedberg; Stephen Gannon, General Counsel and Chief Legal Officer of Citizens Financial Group; Rick Howard, Chief Security Officer of Palo Alto Networks; Bryan Rose, Managing Director of Stroz Friedberg; Ari Mahairas, Special Agent in Charge of Special Operations/Cyber Division of the FBI; Walter Andrews, Partner at Hunton & Williams; and Tom Ricketts, Senior Vice President and Executive Director of Aon Risk Solutions. Continue Reading Hunton Privacy and Insurance Leaders Address Prevention and Insurability of Cyber Attacks

Privacy and data security issues have become the subject of critical focus in corporate mergers, acquisitions, divestitures and related transactions. In 2016 and 2017, several large transactions, especially those involving telecommunications, entertainment and technology companies, have been impacted by either concerns about the collection and use of personal information or significant information security breaches. The FTC has sharpened its focus on the use of personal information as a factor in evaluating the competitive effects of a given corporate transaction, and the SEC is now closely scrutinizing privacy and data security representations made to investors in public filings connected to transactions. More broadly, privacy and data security problems that are not timely discovered before entering into an M&A transaction can become significant liabilities post-closing and also lead to litigation. Continue Reading Securing a Successful Transaction through Focused Privacy and Data Security Due Diligence

In March 2017, Syed Ahmad, a partner with Hunton & Williams LLP’s insurance practice, and Eileen Garczynski, partner at insurance brokerage Ames & Gough, co-authored an article, Protecting Company Assets with Cyber Liability Insurance, in Mealey’s Data Privacy Law Report. The article describes why cyber liability insurance is necessary for companies and provides tips on how it can make a big difference. Ahmad and Garczynski discuss critical questions companies seeking to protect company assets through cyber insurance should be asking.

Read the full article.

On October 25, 2016, the Federal Trade Commission released a guide for businesses on how to handle and respond to data breaches (the “Guide”). The 16-page Guide details steps businesses should take once they become aware of a potential breach. The Guide also underscores the need for cyber-specific insurance to help offset potentially significant response costs. Continue Reading FTC Issues Guide for Businesses on Handling Data Breaches

As reported in the Hunton Insurance Recovery Blog, insurance-giant American International Group (“AIG”) announced that it will be the first insurer to offer standalone primary coverage for property damage, bodily injury, business interruption and product liability that results from cyber attacks and other cyber-related risks. According to AIG, “Cyber is a peril [that] can no longer be considered a risk covered by traditional network security insurance product[s].” The new AIG product, known as CyberEdge Plus, is intended to offer broader and clearer coverage for harms that had previously raised issues with insurers over the scope of available coverage. AIG explains its new coverage as follow:

Continue Reading AIG Launches Cyber-BI and PD Policy

On June 30, 2016, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”) announced that it had settled potential HIPAA Security Rule violations with Catholic Health Care Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia (“CHCS”). This is the first enforcement action OCR has taken against a business associate since the HIPAA Omnibus Rule was enacted in 2013. The HIPAA Omnibus Rule made business associates directly liable for their violations of the HIPAA rules. The settlement with CHCS is also notable because it involved a breach that affected fewer than 500 individuals. Continue Reading OCR Enters into First Enforcement Action Against Business Associate

TCCWNA. The very acronym evokes head scratches and sighs of angst and frustration among many lawyers in the retail industry. You have probably heard about it. You may have even been warned about it. And you may currently be trying to figure out how best to minimize your risk and exposure this very moment. But what is it and why has virtually every retailer been hit with a TCCWNA class action demand letter or lawsuit in the past few months? And why are most retailers scrambling to update the terms and conditions of their websites? Continue Reading The New Wave of Consumer Class Actions Targeting Retailers: What is the TCCWNA?

On April 6, 2016, U.S. District Judge R. Gary Klausner approved a settlement in Corona v. Sony Pictures Entertainment, Inc., No. 14-CV-09600 (RGK). As we previously reported, the litigation centered on a data breach involving the stolen personal information of at least 15,000 former and current employees. After a partial success on its motion to dismiss, Sony still faced potential liability for negligence based on its three-week delay in notifying its employees of the data breach, as well as statutory claims under the California Confidentiality of Medical Information Act and the Unfair Competition Law. Continue Reading Federal Court: Sony Pictures Data Breach Class Action Settlement Approved

As reported on the Hunton Insurance Recovery Blog, data breach claims involving customer data can present an ever-increasing risk for companies across all industries. A recent case illustrates efforts to recover the costs associated with such claims. A panel of the Fourth Circuit confirmed that general liability policies can afford coverage for cyber-related liabilities, and ruled that an insurer had to pay attorneys’ fees to defend the policyholder in class action litigation in Travelers Indemnity Company v. Portal Healthcare Solutions, No. 14-1944. Syed Ahmad, a partner in the Hunton & Williams LLP insurance practice, was quoted in a Law360 article concerning the importance of this decision. Continue Reading If a Data Breach Occurs and Nobody Accesses Customer Data, Does it Constitute “Publication”?