Blog

Recent Blog Posts

  • Twists in the Plot: California AG Releases Final CCPA Regulations With a little time to consider the finalized California Consumer Privacy Act regulations released by the California Attorney General on August 14, 2020, it is clear that some last-minute negotiations (or perhaps just some thoughtful additional analysis) took place that led to some unexpected changes. The lion’s share of the regulation requirements have been discussed in depth, so let’s just focus on the following noteworthy changes: Language for Do Not Sell Link. Prior versions enabled companies selling personal information to include a link reading “Do... More
  • Reopening Plans and Recommended Protocols Beg New Privacy Issues While far from getting us back to any kind of normal that predated the COVID-19 pandemic, states have begun to relax lockdown requirements and some previously closed “nonessential” businesses are returning to operations. With such openings, governmental entities, trade organizations, and others are wisely recommending protocols, including using wellness screenings, in an effort to lower the risk that such reopenings result in a reversal of trends that have flattened the infection curve. While such protocols focus on ensuring the health... More
  • Senate Democrats Release Competing COVID-19 Privacy Bill Democratic Senators Richard Blumenthal and Mark Warner have introduced the Public Health Emergency Privacy Act in response to the bill of the same subject released by Senate Republicans (the COVID-19 Consumer Data Protection Act) at the end of last month. As with the CCDPA, the PHEPA regulates the collection of emergency health data. While the respective bills differ in many ways, the most glaring distinctions focus (not surprisingly) on enforcement, preemption, and certain uses of data. While both measures provide for enforcement by the FTC and... More
  • Signatures Submitted for Inclusion of New California Privacy Law on November Ballot Californians for Consumer Privacy has announced that it has secured and submitted enough signatures to qualify its California Privacy Rights Act (“CPRA”) for inclusion on California’s November 2020 ballot. Alistair Mactaggart, the architect behind the ballot initiative that led to the California legislature’s adoption of the CCPA, pushed forward with the CPRA to amend perceived issues and shortcomings in the CCPA. Among other things, the CPRA would Generally increase transparency and consumer control of personal data held by an entity subject to... More
  • Federal “COVID-19 Consumer Data Protection Act” Proposed A group of Republican senators has proposed a new privacy law to govern the collection and use of certain personal information thought to be both important and at risk during the current coronavirus crisis. While numerous companies and governments have developed and deployed apps and programs to track individuals and trace contacts between individuals in furtherance of the laudable goal of helping to better understand and address the pandemic, there have been concerns that such data could be collected without proper... More
  • Private Rights of Action and the CCPA—Unlimited Limitation? As we are all well aware by now, the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) (Cal. Civ. Code Sections 1798.100 et seq.) went into effect on Jan. 1. Through its amendments and regulations (the latter of which have yet to be finalized as of this article’s publication), one aspect of the act has stayed largely consistent: the CCPA grants a private right of action only in limited situations. While the California Attorney General has the ability to impose fines for any... More
  • Trademark Office Deadlines and Coronavirus-Related Delays With all of the business interruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, many worldwide trademark offices have taken steps to recognize the issues caused by the crisis. The offices in which applicants from the U.S. most commonly file – the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO), and the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) – have provided some relief. Under United States law, the USPTO does not have the congressional authority necessary to waive any... More
  • Public Ends From Private Means: Privacy Rights and Benevolent Use of Personal Data With the explosion of COVID-19 cases worldwide, companies and governments have expanded their interest in the use of the vast stores of consumer data. Even where such collection and use of personal data is ostensibly for the public good, the privacy rights and legal requirements applicable to such data must be considered carefully.[i] In recent weeks, a plethora of private companies have introduced programs and applications to monitor and assess the spread of the disease, as well as to assess the... More
  • Data Scraping Under the Revised CCPA Regulations On March 11, 2020, California Attorney General Xavier Barrera released a second revision to the draft California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) regulations. The new draft contains a number of important changes to the regulatory landscape under the CCPA. One very specific change—concerning data scraping—caught my eye. Since the CCPA has been discussed and, indeed, even earlier in connection with the GDPR, there has been an open question of whether entities that pull personal data from public sources (e.g., from the... More
  • Data Breach Disclosure Requirements Implicate More Than Privacy Law Various state laws require data breach notification and different state laws have different triggers for when notification is required and who must be notified. In California, for example, a breached company must give notice to each affected California resident, but the California AG need be notified only if the breach affected 500 or more individuals in California. In New York, on the other hand, AG notification is required if any NY residents were affected by the breach. While all such laws... More

Firm Highlights

Publication

Top 10 Practical Business Implications Arising From the Passage of the CPRA

California’s Proposition 24 passed as expected, and the new California Privacy Rights Act will change the privacy landscape created by the California Consumer Protection Act (CCPA), which went into effect only months ago. While...

Read More
Publication

Employment Law Issues to Consider Before Including Work Made for Hire Clauses in Contractor Agreements

For most employers, it is important to own the intellectual property rights in written and/or graphic work commissioned from independent contractors.  But including a Work Made for Hire Clause (“WMFH Clause”) in an independent...

Read More
Publication

Cannabis Advertisements Prohibited on California Interstates and State Cross-Border Routes

You may have recently received a notice from the Bureau of Cannabis Control, the California Department of Food and Agriculture, and/or the California Department of Public Health regarding billboard advertisements featuring cannabis products and...

Read More
Publication

Cyber Insurance for the Cannabis Industry

Farella's Shanti Eagle (moderator), Nate Garhart and Tyler Gerking, along with guest speakers Javier Gonzalez and Michael Peters from PL Risk Advisors, discuss "Cyber Insurance for the Cannabis Industry." Cannabis businesses have cyber security...

Read More
Publication

How to Guard Against 3 Cannabis Cyber Attack Risks

Cyber attacks are now commonplace. Ransomware attacks, in particular, have skyrocketed in frequency and size. High-profile data breaches have cost businesses in the United States millions of dollars in losses and incalculable reputational harm...

Read More
Publication

Electric Fence: Protecting Proprietary Rights in Collected Energy Data

Like companies in other industries, a growing number of modern energy-related companies are focusing their efforts on data collection and analysis. For example, Enphase – an energy technology company – regularly tracks data about how...

Read More
Publication

No Quarter: What Claims Doesn’t Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act Protect Platform Companies Against?

Depending on what you read or who you talk to, Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (47 U.S.C. § 230) (CDA) is either a tool of censorship, a shield of Big Tech that...

Read More
Publication

IP Law up for Best Supporting Role in the COVID-19 Relief Spending Bill and Other New Legislation

The new, more than 5,000-page spending bill (formally known as The Consolidated Appropriations Act), which includes the latest COVID-19 relief, had a few surprises under its cover. Two of those surprises focus directly on...

Read More
Publication

PSDcast – Is Energy Companies' Customer Data a Trade Secret?

We often focus on the privacy issues involved in data collection – and they are critically important – while neglecting the idea of data as a tangible and valuable resource (and how to protect...

Read More
Publication

Cannabis IP: Using Intellectual Property to Protect Your Assets and Grow Your Business

Nate Garhart and Ashley Roybal-Reid discuss "Cannabis IP: Using Intellectual Property to Protect Your Assets and Grow Your Business." Intellectual property (IP) is a critical issue in the cannabis industry. Creating and protecting cannabis products...

Read More