Most companies collect extensive information about their customers, their potential customers, and their employees. The availability of information creates exciting opportunities to reach new customers, to provide existing customers with faster and higher quality services, and to centralize organizational knowledge. Where a decade ago a company waited for a customer to explain what they wanted; the race today is to use information to anticipate wants and needs before they even exist.
The opportunities created from information come with a price – legal risks, challenges, and uncertainty. Bryan Cave’s data privacy and security attorneys are located throughout Europe and the United States and work with companies in a variety of industries – including banks, health care providers, outsourcers, and retailers – and focus on one thing: helping our clients utilize customer data to increase opportunities and enhance user experience, all while decreasing corporate risks.
The issues that we routinely address for our clients include:
- Behavioral advertising refers to the use of information about consumers to predict the types of products or services that might be of greatest interest to them. We help clients navigate the changing legal framework governing behavioral advertising and assist them with structuring advertising initiatives that minimize regulatory and litigations risks.
- Transparency and trust are key components to e-commerce. We work with our clients to help them clearly and accurately describe their privacy and security practices to their consumers, their business partners, and, where necessary, to regulators.
- The global marketplace requires information to be transferred across national borders. We routinely assist clients with creating strategies for how to safely and effectively transfer personal information, including information about European Union residents, to the United States and other countries around the globe.
- We advise international, national, and local retailers concerning their ability to share information as part of joint marketing initiatives, outsourcing arrangements and affiliate marketing programs.
- Protecting valuable information poses an increasingly difficult challenge in light of ever changing cyber-threats. We assist companies with understanding how to thoroughly identify risks that exist to the data within their possession, and to design systems to address those risks and ensure data that is safe, stays safe.
- New technologies, such as cloud computing, present alternatives for storing information at low-cost. We help our clients evaluate the risks associated with alternative data storage, as well as identify legal solutions that enable them to take advantage of efficient cost saving technologies.
Responding to Unforeseen Events
- No matter how good a company’s security is, data security events are unavoidable. We routinely advise retailers, health care providers, and data processors who have data security incidents concerning how to investigate the event, how to comply with FTC, banking, and/or state regulations that may require consumer or government notification.
- When information does become breached, companies often find themselves the target of government investigations and private litigation. We represent companies in data security investigations brought by the FTC, and in litigation under state data safeguard statutes, or consumer protection statutes, for allegedly providing inadequate data security.
- When a security breach occurs preventing liability often means analyzing facts, identifying legal obligations, and taking steps to prevent or mitigate harm within the first minutes and hours of becoming aware of a breach. That's why an attorney from our Data Privacy and Security Team is on-call for clients whenever and wherever a breach occurs: 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For more information visit our Bryan Cave Data Breach Hotline web page.