On April 2, 2020, the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) at the U.S Department of Health and Human Services released a notification related to the discretion that OCR will exercise concerning HIPAA enforcement during the COVID-19 public health emergency. Effective immediately, OCR will not impose penalties for violations of certain provisions of the HIPAA Privacy Rule against business associates for “good faith uses and disclosures of PHI by business associates for public health and health oversight activities.” HIPAA already permits covered entities to provide this data. With this new guidance from OCR, now business associates can disclose this data to certain public health authorities without risk of a HIPAA privacy enforcement action or penalty. Continue Reading
The developing coronavirus pandemic affects businesses and personnel within the state and elsewhere. With more New Yorkers working from home, there are more opportunities for cyberattacks through unsecure remote connections and the public concern growing each day.
The New York SHIELD (“Stop Hacks and Improve Electronic Data Security”) Act was signed to law on July 25, 2019. It is an amendment to New York’s data breach notification law. The SHIELD Act provides a number of changes that we reported last year, including expanding the definitions of “private information” and “breach.” The definition of “private information” now covers emails and passwords or security questions and answers, credit card details, and biometric data among others. A “breach of the security system” now covers unauthorized access, where such access may have occurred if “the information was viewed, communicated with, used, or altered” without authorization. Continue Reading
With the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), cybersecurity criminals and scammers are ramping up their efforts to target vulnerable employers and workforces. The FTC announced today that since January they have received more than 7,800 fraud complaints from consumers related to the COVID-19 pandemic. But the FTC isn’t slowing down either. Even with the FTC having to change its own procedures due to COVID-19, the FTC has been publishing guidance on COVID-19 scams and also sending out warning letters to sellers of false treatments. Continue Reading
This alert focuses on the ongoing and developing privacy issues that have arisen for employers and healthcare providers communicating about the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Specifically, we will discuss the steps that employers and healthcare companies need to consider when communicating to its employees, the media and general public, and government officials when an individual has been diagnosed with the coronavirus or may have been exposed to the coronavirus. Continue Reading
On October 11, 2019, the California Governor, Gavin Newsom, signed into law five CCPA-amending bills and an additional CCPA-related bill that were awaiting his signature. The CCPA, or the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018, gives California consumers certain rights to learn about and control how a business within the CCPA’s scope handles the personal information that business collects about the consumer.
In anticipation of the official finalized version of the CCPA, incorporating the five, newly-signed amendments, we have created an “Unofficial CCPA, As Amended” which is available here for reference.
The Governor’s signature on these six bills last Friday is the latest step in the efforts of the California legislature to clarify and amend the scope and requirements of the CCPA since its passage in 2018. These amendments to the CCPA will become operative with the rest of the CCPA on January 1, 2020. More information about these bills is available here.
The day before, October 10, 2019, the California Attorney General released proposed implementing regulations for the CCPA, which are now subject to public comment prior to finalization. More information about the press release and the proposed regulations is available here.
Please continue to check our blog for CCPA-related information and updates.
On October 10, 2019, the California Attorney General, Xavier Becerra, announced at a press conference that his office has released proposed implementing regulations for the California Consumer Privacy Act (“CCPA”). The text of the proposed regulations is available here.
As background, the CCPA is a California privacy law that seeks to give California consumers the rights to know about and control the personal information that businesses collect about them. For a detailed discussion of the CCPA, please see our previous posts (available here and here). Continue Reading
Effective tomorrow, October 1, 2019, the existing Nevada Privacy of Information Collected on the Internet from Consumers Act will be amended to include a consumer right to opt out from the sale of personal information and to impose verification requirements on “Operators” covered by the law. The existing law requires such covered entities to post privacy notices. The new consumer opt-out right was added through Senate Bill 220 (“SB 220”), which was signed into law earlier this summer. While this addition to Nevada’s privacy framework draws comparisons to consumer rights afforded under the California Consumer Privacy Act (the “CCPA”), the act, as amended by SB 220, applies to a much narrower category of businesses and is limited to certain types of “Covered Information” that are transferred as part of a “Sale” of data. Continue Reading