As a growing number of states pass legislation which will protect individuals’ social media accounts from employer scrutiny, they have encountered a surprising adversary – FINRA and other securities regulators. To date, at least six states have enacted social media employee privacy laws (which were blogged about here, here, here, and here) and upwards of … Continue Reading
Are social media companies based in the United States subject to European data privacy laws? Two recent judicial decisions – one in France and the other in Germany – arrived at different answers. The Civil Court of Paris held that Twitter, based in California, was obligated under the French Code of Civil Procedure to reveal … Continue Reading
On January 10, 2013, President Obama signed into law H.R. 6671, an amendment to the Video Privacy Protection Act of 1988 (VPPA) codified at 18 U.S.C. § 2710, which will permit companies, such as Netflix, to obtain advance consent from consumers to automatically share their movie viewing history on social media sites. While Facebook users have been … Continue Reading
California Governor Jerry Brown has signed a new law protecting employee use of social media by prohibiting an employer from requiring or requesting an employee or applicant for employment to disclose a username or password for the purpose of accessing the employee’s personal social media.… Continue Reading
On April 11, 2012, Katharine Parker, a partner in Proskauer's Labor & Employment Law Department, discussed privacy concerns that arise when an employer demands access to its employees' social media accounts.
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The social networking and micro-blogging service Twitter recently agreed to settle charges with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regarding its privacy and data security practices. Similar to settlement terms reached with other online merchants, the settlement bars Twitter for 20 years from misleading consumers about the extent to which it protects the security, privacy, and confidentiality of nonpublic consumer information. Notably, the agreement also requires Twitter to maintain a comprehensive information security program and submit to audits of the program for 10 years. The settlement agreement does not include a monetary penalty. The FTC alleged that despite Twitter's promises on its website to protect the personal information of its users, Twitter's practices failed to provide reasonable and appropriate security. Unlike many of the other companies that the FTC has pursued regarding online security practices, Twitter does not sell goods online or collect financial information from its users.
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On June 16, 2009, in Pietrylo v. Hillstone Restaurant Group, USDC D.N.J. Case No. 2:06-cv-5754-FSH-PS, a New Jersey federal jury found that the Houston’s restaurant chain violated the Stored Communications Act (SCA) and the New Jersey Wiretapping and Electronic Surveillance Control Act(NJWESCA) by allegedly requiring an employee to surrender to Houston’s managers login information that … Continue Reading
With social networking sites proliferating across international boundaries, privacy and data protection concerns are becoming increasingly relevant. With these concerns in mind, the Article 29 Working Party, an independent European advisory body on data protection and privacy, adopted an opinion on online social networking on June 12, 2009. As noted by the Working Party, the … Continue Reading
According to a new, partially-published California Court of Appeal decision, there is no cause of action for invasion of privacy under the California Constitution where a plaintiff’s myspace.com posting is republished in a newspaper. In Moreno et al. v. Hanford Sentinel, Inc., et al., F054138, slip op. (Cal. Ct. App. April 2, 2009), plaintiff Cynthia … Continue Reading
On May 16, 2008 the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit agreed with a number of other courts, holding that the Communications Decency Act (“CDA”) (47 U.S.C. Sec. 230) protects social networking websites from liability with respect to negligence claims based on third-party content published on the website and the consequences stemming from … Continue Reading
Yesterday, attorneys general from 49 states (all but California's) and the District of Columbia announced a sweeping agreement with MySpace under which the company will adopt new measures to protect children online.
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Kids like social networking sites, most notably MySpace and Facebook. So it is not surpising that law enforcement is scrutinizing how the sites protect children. Recent subpoenas issued to Facebook by New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo and New Jersey Attorney General Anne Milgram are illustrative. Both subpoenas sought information about Facebook’s Internet safety and security policies. The … Continue Reading
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