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HIPAA Penalties For Failure to Cut Off Access To Former Employee

December 12, 2018 | Blog | By Kristen Marotta

It has been a busy few weeks for HIPAA enforcement. On Tuesday, the Office for Civil Rights announced its third resolution of a HIPAA breach in as many weeks. In this latest matter, OCR announced that Pagosa Springs Medical Center (PSMC), a critical access hospital in Colorado, has agreed to both pay $111,400 to the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) as well as adopt a comprehensive, two-year corrective action plan (CAP) to address and settle potential HIPAA violations.
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Recently, Amazon refused (registration required) to provide data from an Amazon Echo device in a case involving the a double homicide in response to an order issued by a New Hampshire state judge.  Prosecutors believe that the Echo may have recorded data relevant to the crime; a potential perpetrator has already been charged. 
Viewpoint General
Companies based outside of the European Union sometimes find it challenging to determine whether the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) applies to them.  And if they finally work out that the GDPR applies, they then have the challenge of finding a local representative as required by Art. 27. 
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Uber and FTC Arrive at Settlement: Extensive Monitoring, but no FTC Fines Ahead

November 15, 2018 | Blog | By Cynthia Larose, Elana Safner

Recently, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) announced that it has finalized its expanded settlement with ride-haling giant, Uber Technologies, Inc. (“Uber”) related to two major data breach incidents. The initial breach occurred in 2014 and led to an FTC investigation into Uber’s data storage practices for rider and driver data.
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FDA Issues Draft Cybersecurity Guidance for Med Devices

October 22, 2018 | Blog | By Cynthia Larose

If you are a medical device manufacturer, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) says that you should prepare a “cybersecurity bill of materials” before marketing your devices.  As outlined in our sister blog’s post, the requirement would require manufacturers to produce a list of the components that could be susceptible to vulnerabilities.
Viewpoint General

“Hey Alexa – Tell Me About Your Security Measures”

October 4, 2018 | Blog | By Brian Lam, Cynthia Larose

California continues to lead the nation in cybersecurity and privacy legislation on the heels of the recent California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 (“CCPA”).  Governor Brown recently signed into law two nearly identical bills, Assembly Bill No. 1906 and Senate Bill No. 327 (the “Legislation”) each of which required the signing of the other to become law, on September 28th, 2018.
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Welcome to October!  October 2018 marks the 15th year of the observance of National Cyber Security Awareness Month, a joint effort of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the National Cyber Security Awareness Alliance.  We’ll be keeping you updated on all things privacy and security throughout the month.
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National Cyber Strategy Aims to Deter through Strength; Collaborate with Private Sector to Secure Cyberspace

September 28, 2018 | Blog | By Christopher Harvie, Cynthia Larose, Elana Safner

Late last week the White House released its National Cyber Strategy, setting forth its approach to protecting U.S. critical infrastructure from global cyber threats.
Viewpoint General
As previously noted in this blog, the Neiman Marcus payment card data theft class action reflects a lenient approach to the issue of standing in data breach cases.  In that case, the Seventh Circuit rejected arguments that customers claiming to have sustained only the theft of debit and credit card information had not alleged sufficient injury to have standing to sue. 
Viewpoint General

More Privacy Legislative Activity in California

September 4, 2018 | Blog | By Cynthia Larose

Labor Day is passed, and the Privacy & Security Matters blog is back after a bit of a hiatus.    The California State Legislature was busy up to the last day of the session working on privacy legislation.
The European Parliament passed a resolution today strongly criticizing Privacy Shield and recommending that Privacy Shield be suspended as of September 1, 2018, if the US doesn’t shape up by that deadline.  Should US companies that rely on Privacy Shield panic?
In its most recent Cybersecurity Newsletter, OCR focuses on the intersection of HIPAA and information security.  To be sure, HIPAA requires covered entities and business associates to address their organizations’ information security.

Narrow Ruling for Privacy at SCOTUS in Carpenter

July 3, 2018 | Blog | By Eoin Beirne

The Supreme Court ruled, at the end of June, that seizing cell-site location information—data that tracks cell phone users’ movements—constitutes a search under the Fourth Amendment.
June 28, 2018 will be a watershed day in the history of U.S. data privacy legislation.   California has become the first state to move away from the U.S. approach of legislating data privacy in slow bits.  

Trump Administration Botnet Report Will Impact IoT Device Makers – Things You Should Know

June 25, 2018 | Blog | By Christopher Harvie, Cynthia Larose, Laura Stefani

Manufacturers of wireless devices used for Internet of Things (IoT) applications should take heed of new Trump Administration proposals aimed at reducing the cybersecurity threats from botnets and other automated and distributed attacks.
In the latest decision concerning standing in data breach cases, the Fourth Circuit has vacated a district court’s dismissal and reinstated putative class action data breach litigation against the National Board of Examiners in Optometry Inc. (“NBEO”).

HIPAA Tips from the Trenches

June 14, 2018 | Blog

Earlier this week, I moderated a panel discussion at an event hosted by the New York chapter of the Health Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS). The panel was comprised of private sector health information technology and security experts and was tasked with discussing challenges related to the interoperability and security of health information systems.

Colorado Passes Far Reaching New Privacy and Cybersecurity Law

June 6, 2018 | Blog | By Cynthia Larose, Brian Lam

Recently, a new bill was signed by Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper, creating far reaching new requirements for entities that collect or maintain personal identifying information of Colorado residents. These requirements, which will create one of the strictest state based privacy and data breach laws in the country, will go into effect September 1, 2018. 

OCR Highlights Importance of Physical Safeguards to Protect PHI

May 31, 2018 | Blog | By Sarah Beth Kuyers

The May 2018 cyber security newsletter from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights (OCR) focused on a topic often overlooked by covered entities and their business associates: physical security.

HAPPY GDPR DAY!!

May 25, 2018 | Blog | By Cynthia Larose, Susan Foster

If you glance at the “countdown clock” in the left hand sidebar of our blog, you’ll see that it has reached 00:00:00. GDPR Day is here. But, unlike Y2K (for those of you old enough to remember the near-hysteria), 25 May 2018 is only the beginning of the GDPR compliance road and not a “completion date.”
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