Behind the Scenes

Arent Fox's advertising law blog - latest news and trends in advertising, data security & privacy, and fashion & entertainment.

Behind the Scenes
Advertising, Mobile Marketing, Social Media, Telemarketing & Other Direct Marketing, Fashion Law: Luxury Goods, Designer Brands & Retail
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Online Retailer and Executive Plead Guilty to Price-Fixing Conspiracy Conducted Via Social Media and Text Messaging

An online retailer and its president recently pled guilty to a price-fixing conspiracy for customized promotional products that was implemented through text messaging and social media platforms. The successful prosecutions are the latest in the Department of Justice’s ongoing antitrust investigation into the online promotional products industry.
 

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Advertising, Social Media, User-Generated Content
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Instagram Signals to #Influencers That There’s a #NewSheriff in Town

TLDR

Instagram has a message for social media Influencers: the Wild West is coming to an end. The popular photo-sharing platform is rolling out a new tool that will make it easier to tag and track paid commercial content. The tool offers a potential replacement for the much loathed “#ad” disclosure, but it also signals a coming crackdown on Influencer posts.

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Privacy & Security - US & Abroad, Blockchain
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Sarah Bruno Discusses Legal Landscape of Blockchain-Ready Industries at ILTACON 2017

Privacy, Cybersecurity & Data Protection group leader Sarah Bruno will discuss "Blockchain in Legal" with Thomson Reuters' Joseph Raczynski at the 2017 International Legal Technology Association (ILTA) Annual Educational Conference, ILTACON.

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Privacy & Security - US & Abroad
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Data Divide: Japan’s Clarity and China’s Chaos in Reshaped Privacy and Security Regs

What’s New?

Major regulatory changes in data governance recently went into effect in Japan and China that are likely to impact organizations doing business in these Asian markets. While the regulations are long-awaited, their implementation follows on the heels of the global Wannacry ransomware data scare and at the same time as companies attempt to prepare for the European General Data Protection Regulation. Both countries’ changes warrant reviews of company policies and procedures, but they are also quite different: Japan’s straightforward amendments focus on consumer information and data protection, while China turned a controversial focus to network operators managing data.

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Privacy & Security - US & Abroad, Press Releases, Advertising
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Daily Journal Names Arent Fox Partners Sarah Bruno and Jennifer Terry 'Top Women Lawyers'

Arent Fox LLP is pleased to announce that Privacy, Cybersecurity & Data Protection partner Sarah L. Bruno and Labor & Employment partner Jennifer C. Terry have been named among the “Top Women Lawyers” in California by the Daily Journal as a result of their impressive track record of successes on behalf of clients, their role as mentors within the firm, and their impact on the overall legal profession.
 

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Privacy & Security - US & Abroad
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This Ransomware Will Make You WannaCry

What’s New?

Ransomware is old news, as we had previously written here. Its latest iteration, the currently circulating WannaCry ransomware, is no laughing matter. The WannaCry vulnerability was reportedly first uncovered by the National Security Agency (NSA) but kept under wraps as a potential tool for possible surveillance. It was subsequently found by hackers who released a cache of stolen NSA documents on the internet, including details about WannaCry.
 

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Advertising
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Door Remains Open on “Closing Letters” – FTC Issues 7 Closing Letters on Made in USA

March and April were very busy months for the Federal Trade Commission’s Office of Consumer Protection staff who focus on “Made in USA” enforcement. Indeed, FTC issued seven “closing letters” to companies during a three-week period, in which FTC closed out its investigations involving allegations that each company “overstated the extent to which” the products in each case were made in the United States. In each case, the FTC closed out the investigation based on the company’s agreement to implement a remedial action plan, including but not limited to such actions as removing unqualified US-origin claims from websites and social media and providing corrected qualified claims to third-party resellers and distributors. This flurry of activity began on March 14, 2017 and ended on April 5, 2017, as follows:

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Health Privacy & Security, Privacy & Security - US & Abroad
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Our Allies Under Attack! Ransomware Hits the Brits and Quickly Spreading Across Globe – Batten Down the Hatches NOW

What’s New?

Last week, numerous hospitals operated by Britain’s National Health Service (NHS) suffered a ransomware event in which hospital computer systems were encrypted, phone lines became inoperable, patients were diverted, and a Bitcoin ransom was demanded. Hospitals across Britain shut down their computer systems in order to protect patient data and prevent further spread and advised people to stay home unless there was an emergency. NHS Digital, Britain’s national hospital cybersecurity overseer, stated that 16 NHS organizations across Britain had reported an incident, but that the attack did not appear to be specifically targeting NHS hospitals. At this time, there is no indication that the ransomware has exfiltrated any personal data from the NHS.

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Product Placement & Distribution, Advertising
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FTC Fires Warning Shot Over Misleading Instagram Posts

What’s New?

The Federal Trade Commission recently sent more than 90 letters to celebrities, athletes, and other influencers reminding them that brand endorsements made in social media posts must comply with the FTC’s Endorsement Guides. The letters reminded social media influencers – individuals or groups recruited to promote a brand’s products or services – that social media endorsements must clearly and conspicuously disclose “material connections” between the influencer and the brand, and focused on the need to disclose such connection in Instagram posts.
 

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Health Privacy & Security, Privacy & Security - US & Abroad
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New Director, Same Direction for OCR HIPAA Enforcement

What’s New?

On Monday, the US Department of Health & Human Services’ Office for Civil Rights announced that CardioNet has entered into a $2.5 million HIPAA settlement. CardioNet provides mobile cardiac monitoring services and is the first wireless health services provider to enter into a settlement with OCR. CardioNet had not performed a risk analysis or adopted a risk management plan; its Security Rule policies and procedures were still in draft form; and CardioNet was unable to show that it had finalized and implemented any policies safeguarding ePHI, including safeguards for mobile devices. This lack of compliance with the Security Rule contributed to the theft of an employee’s laptop containing the unsecured ePHI of 1,391 individuals.

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ABOUT ARENT FOX LLP

Arent Fox LLP, founded in 1942, is internationally recognized in core practice areas where business and government intersect. With more than 350 lawyers, the firm provides strategic legal counsel and multidisciplinary solutions to clients that range from Fortune 500 corporations to trade associations. The firm has offices in Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, and Washington, DC.