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Businesses Must Take Information Security Seriously July 11, 2011

Posted by Arieh M. Flemenbaum in Biz IT, Business, Business Technology, Information security.
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Several companies have suffered data breaches recently. The list includes tech-savy companies, like Sony and Apple and companies, and major financial giants whose data is closely regulated, like  Citi Bank.  However, no business is  immune from a data breach, and the laws protecting the personal data apply to all companies, both big and small.

Does your business have a plan in place to protect the personal information of your customers?  Do you know the legal obligation imposed on your business if  a breach happened?  Do you have a plan in place to handle a potential breach of your data/information and to make the necessary disclosures and/or notification of a breach?

The improper handling of a breach not only can be bad for business, it can also create legal issues for your business.  There has been a significant increase in the enforcement (and fines issued) in connection with data breaches. Recently, WellPoint Inc. reached a settlement with the Indiana Attorney General over a delayed notification concerning a data breach – see http://www.healthcareinfosecurity.com/articles.php?art_id=3824&pg=1

 

WellPoint had a data breach that allowed the personal information of approximately 32,500 customers to be potentially accessible over the Internet. The exposed data included social security numbers, financial information and health records. WellPoint agreed to: pay $100,000 to the Indiana Attorney General’s Office; provide up to two years of credit monitoring and identity-theft protection services to Indiana consumers affected by the breach; and provide reimbursement  of up to $50,000 (to each customer) for any losses that result from identity theft due to the breach.

There are at least two lessons that your business should learn from WellPoint’s case:

1.   Act quickly to notify the affected parties and report a material data breach to the appropriate authorities.  In WellPoint’s case, it took approximately 3 months to report its breach to the Indiana Attorney General.  Data breaches happen, but when they happen be sure to comply with the applicable laws. Many local and federal laws require disclosure and/or notification of the breach “without an unreasonable delay.” Some statutes require a business to report a data breach within a specified time period. So, it is imperative that the party responsible for your business’ information security is familiar with the applicable laws and the requirements imposed on your business.

2.   Investigate and Monitor your third-party vendors who handle any personal and protected information.   In a statement, WellPoint indicated that the breach occurred during an update of its online application system and was told by its third party vendor that there were security measures in place – which they were not. To make matters worse, WellPoint apparently did not know about the data breaches for four months.

You company must take its information security responsibilities seriously. You must have a plan for protecting your data and information and a plan to handle a potential breach. Your business must also have  a person who is responsible to implement and monitor these plans, watch any third-party vendors and put your plans into action if a data breach occurs.

 

 

 

 

Mid-Year Business Check-up Tip No. 8: June 17, 2011

Posted by Arieh M. Flemenbaum in Business, Business best practices, business check-up, business planning, Chicago Business, Intellectual Property, Legal Information, Licensing.
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To help you complete a check-up and strategic mid-year planning for your business, we will publish helpful tips and ideas through the end of the month. This tip is part of our ongoing series.

Business Check-up Tip No. 8:

Are you maximizing your intellectual property rights? Meet with your business lawyer to discuss ways you can you monetize your IP rights and secure potential new sources of income. Be sure to have measures in place to secure and protect your valuable intellectual property rights and trade secrets. Address any infringements and/or possible disputes over your IP rights, licensing and trade secrets.

Check for updates every week day through July 1st.

______________________________________________________________

For information on how the business lawyers at Griffith & Jacobson, LLC can help your business grow, contact Arieh M. Flemenbaum at 312-236-8110 or by email at Contact Us (http://www.gjlaw.com/contact).

Griffith & Jacobson, LLC – We know business – Chicago’s Business Lawyers.

Year-End Business Check-up No. 8: December 16, 2010

Posted by Arieh M. Flemenbaum in Business, Business best practices, business check-up, business planning, Chicago Business, Intellectual Property, Legal Information, Licensing.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,
add a comment

To help you complete a check-up and strategic year-end planning for your business, we will publish helpful tips and ideas through the end of the year. This tip is part of our ongoing series.

Business Check-up No. 8:

Are you maximizing your intellectual property rights? Meet with your business lawyer to discuss ways you can you monetize your IP rights and secure potential new sources of income. Be sure to have measures in place to secure and protect your valuable intellectual property rights and trade secrets. Address any infringements and/or possible disputes over your IP rights, licensing and trade secrets.

Check for updates every week day through December 31st.

Happy Holidays from Griffith & Jacobson, LLC!

______________________________________________________________

For information on how the business lawyers at Griffith & Jacobson, LLC can help your business grow, contact Arieh M. Flemenbaum at 312-236-8110 or by email at Contact Us (http://www.gjlaw.com/contact).

Griffith & Jacobson, LLC – We know business – Chicago’s Business Lawyers.

 

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