Cyber Security/Privacy

Warning: Message from Unknown Sender

By: Killoran Long, Summer Blogger Even after the warning, you just can’t help yourself. You’ve opened the email from an unfamiliar web address, and boom! In just seconds, there goes all your data, and worse – all of your firm’s and clients’ data too.

Cyberattacks and data breaches are too often making headlines and creating headaches in today’s tech-reliant world. But how can individuals and firms protect themselves if and when they befall victim to such a breach?

Enter cyber insurance: a type of general insurance that covers “internet-based liability and risks,” developed with the intention to help entities “recover from a data breach or identity theft by mitigating all the costs that crop up in the aftermath.” Though most companies have been covered by some form of cyber protection under existing general or professional liability insurance policies,stand-alone cyber policies are relatively new to the market and have only been available for a little over a decade.  Continue reading »

Don’t Pay the Tool: Artificial Intelligence is a Creative Tool, Not a Creative Entity

By: Daniel Norton, Summer Blogger the past decade, Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) has been used to create artistic works as well as news articles. For example, A.I. has created works which can imitate famous artists such as Rembrandt van Rijn, as well as generating articles for newspapers like The Washington Post. These recent innovations have led some people to ask whether A.I. should be eligible to receive a copyright for its creations. Current Copyright Law does not classify A.I. works as copyrightable creations, however, A.I. might one day achieve a level of intelligence to warrant such accreditation to be protected under United States Copyright Laws.

Since 1973, it has been the official policy of the United States Copyright Office to deny any copyright claims if the work was not created by a human being. In fact, The Compendium of U.S. Copyright Office Practices states that in order for a work to be eligible for copyright protection, it must be “created by a human being.” In one instance, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals seems supported the requirement that a human must be the creator for a work to receive copyright protection. In the case Naruto v. Slader, the court denied the monkey, Naruto, standing to bring an action under the Copyright Act. This holding from one of the primary goalsof Intellectual Property Law: to benefit society by incentivizing innovation by allowing creators and innovators the right to profit from their creations for a set period. Continue reading »

President Trump Selects Pro-Business Nominee With Experience in Intellectual Property

By: Whitney Hosey, Editor-in-Chief

On Monday, July 9, President Trump announced his nominee to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy. The nominee, the Honorable Brett Kavanaugh, has served as a federal appeals court judge since his appointment by President George W. Bush in 2006. In that time, Judge Kavanaugh has “written almost 300 opinions.” Among those opinions are several involving both business law and intellectual property law.

On the business end of things, Kavanaugh has consistently ruled in favor of businesses in pivotal cases. For example, in Verizon New England Inc. v. NLRB, Kavanaugh wrote the majority opinion overruling the National Labor Relations Board’s (“NLRB”) decision in favor of an employees’ union. Instead, the Court determined that the union had violated a collective bargaining agreement with Verizon by “displaying pro-union signs in their vehicles.” On the whole “Kavanaugh is considered pragmatic.” The biggest business law and telecom related case which may come before the High Court is determining “whether a proposed nationwide class of consumers can sue Apple, Inc. for allegedly monopolizing the iPhone app market.” The lower court has already granted the plaintiffs standing on the anti-trust claims, whether Kavanaugh would choose to overrule that determination is unclear. Continue reading »

Welcome to the Era of the General Data Protection Regulation

By: Matthew Hooker, Summer Blogger

On May 25, 2018, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) went into effect. Although the GDPR is a regulation established by the European Union (EU), its impact extends far beyond the EU. The regulation applies not only to entities within the EU but also to any entity that handles the personal data of “data subjects” residing in the EU. As the New York Times puts it, “the borderless nature of the online world has virtually every commercial entity that touches the web making changes to its sites and apps to comply.” Continue reading »

How the Senate’s “Honest Ads Act” Will Affect Online Advertisers Patrick Wilson

On October 19th, 2017, a bipartisan group of Senators including Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), John McCain (R-AZ), and Mark Warner (D-VA) introduced legislation that would require more transparency and disclosure of the groups funding online advertising during election season. The purpose of proposed Senate Bill 1989, ‘The Honest Ads Act’, would hold online advertising platforms like Facebook, Google, and Twitter to the same standards as traditional media, such as television and radio.

The Bill requires that platforms with more than fifty million unique monthly visitors keep a public record of the parties that purchase more than $500 in advertising and disclose the purchaser of those ads, which included the ad’s target audience is, the ad rate, the name of the candidate the ad supported, and contact information of the ad. The Bill’s stated goal is preventing foreign nationals from purchasing political ads and potentially influencing the perception of American citizens during election season with false or misleading information.  Continue reading »

Employee Tracking: How to Balance Business Efficiency and the Right to Privacy

By: Christopher Lewis *| Staff Writer

By Rama (Own work) [CeCILL ( or CC BY-SA 2.0 fr (], via Wikimedia Commons

By Rama (Own work) [CeCILL ( or CC BY-SA 2.0 fr (], via Wikimedia Commons

With the advent of new technology, privacy concerns are becoming an increasingly hot topic of debate in many different forms. People across the globe are becoming more cognizant of the personal right to privacy and are working to protect it; however, other factions believe that technological advances and the integration of life and technology are worth the loss in privacy rights. Some believe that it is only a matter of time before we fall into the dystopian worlds that George Orwell and Ray Bradbury, respectfully, espoused in 1984 and Fahrenheit 451. Continue reading »

AmEx and Ripple Creating Waves with Blockchain B2B Payments

By: Whitney Hosey *| Staff Writer

American Express is partnering with Ripple, a fintech startup, to introduce the option of instant blockchain secured payments between U.S. based businesses and U.K. businesses who bank with Santander UK.

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A Hack a Day Keeps Cybersecurity at Bay: The SEC and Cybercrime

By: Emily Marcum *| Staff Writer

What do a consulting firm, a regulatory agency, and a consumer credit reporting bureau have in common? They are all members of the financial industry who recently fell victim to hacking. In the past month, hackers have successfully stolen sensitive information from the SEC, Equifax, and Deloitte. Although these three hacks varied in scope and severity, together they illuminate the “Achilles’ heel” of the financial industry, cybersecurity! Targeting the financial industry is an obvious choice. When asked why he robbed banks, the infamous American bank robber, Willie Sutton, said it best, “Because that’s where the money is.”

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Equifax or Equihacks?

By: Emily Marcum *| Staff Writer

Cybersecurity is not the next frontier for most businesses; in fact, it’s more or less the only game in town. Over the last decade, the phrase “cybersecurity” has echoed in boardrooms, courtrooms, and living rooms like never before. What was once intellectual chatter, has become a “fact of life for corporations and governments.” According to U.S. President, Donald Trump, “Cyber theft is the fastest growing crime in the United States by far.”  So, it is no surprise that consumers were recently greeted with yet another disappointing headline concerning Equifax’s massive data breach.

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Federal Cybersecurity: CIA Falls Victim to Hackers

By: Evan Reid*| Guest Writer

The latest in a string of government cyberhackings targeted the CIA. The trove of hacked files, code-named “Vault 7,” details how the CIA can hack into Apple and Android devices to gather text and voice messages before they are encrypted. The files also reveal the CIA’s capabilities to hack into Smart TVs and vehicle control systems, including models from Jeep. The hackers subsequently released the compromised content to WikiLeaks, which published the highly sensitive material on March 7th. White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer called the hacking “a major concern.”

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