Privacy & Security Matters Mintz Levin : Data Compliance & Security, Employee Privacy Lawyer & Attorney

Tag Archives: Employee Privacy

Wearable Devices in the Workplace Challenge Data Security and Privacy

Posted in Cybersecurity, Data Compliance & Security, Employee Privacy

  Wearable devices, including health and activity monitors, video and audio recorders, location trackers, and other interconnected devices in the form of watches, wristbands, glasses, rings, bracelets, belts, gloves, earrings and shoes are being heavily promoted in the next wave of consumer electronics. It is estimated that 90 million wearable data devices (“WDD”) will be… Continue Reading

Coming Next Week: The 12 Days of Privacy

Posted in Uncategorized

Haul out the holly, fill up the stockings, even though it’s just one week past Thanksgiving day…..   Rather than look back at 2013, next week the Privacy & Security blog will count down The 12 Days of Privacy, looking ahead to what we might expect in 2014.    The editor’s muse for this series… Continue Reading

Does an employer invade an employee’s privacy by accessing and reviewing the employee’s email?

Posted in Employee Privacy, Privacy Litigation

A recent Massachusetts Superior Court decision, Falmouth Firefighters Union v. Town of Falmouth, answers “no.” Our colleagues over at the Mintz Levin Employment Matters blog have posted an analysis of this interesting decision and the takeaways for employers — particularly Massachusetts employers. Read more here.  

SCOTUS Speaks — Privacy Implications of Employment Background Checks

Posted in Uncategorized

Employers in the public and private sector should take note of the path taken last week by the U.S. Supreme Court, addressing a privacy challenge to a background check by government contractor employees.  The case, NASA v. Nelson (“NASA”), overturned a Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling holding that certain questions in a background check… Continue Reading

On Data Privacy Day: Another Reason to Look Over Your Employee Handbooks and Communications Policies

Posted in Uncategorized

My colleagues, Mitch Danzig and Brandon Willenberg have authored an advisory about a court ruling in favor of employers (relatively rare) in California.  The California Court of Appeal recently issued such a ruling in Holmes v. Petrovich Development Company, LLC, et al, regarding employee privacy rights with respect to the use of the employer’s computer… Continue Reading

Don’t Shoot the Messenger: Another Court Cautions Against Retaliating Against Employees Who Report Data Security Concerns

Posted in Data Compliance & Security

Written by Michael Arnold, Cynthia Larose and Jennifer Rubin Recently, a California state appellate court in Cutler v. Dike, No. B210624, 2010 WL 3341663 (Cal. Ct. App. Aug. 26, 2010), upheld a jury finding that an employer illegally fired an employee because he objected to the manner in which his employer maintained its confidential patient… Continue Reading

Final regulations published on protection of genetic information

Posted in Employee Privacy

Written by Andrew Matzkin The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued its final regulations implementing the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (“GINA”) on Tuesday. The Regulations do a nice job of explaining the real-world application of GINA, and especially how GINA may impact normal HR activities which companies may (mistakenly) assume are not covered by GINA.  To… Continue Reading

No Harm, No Foul; Ninth Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Data Breach Case Against The Gap

Posted in Data Breach

Written by Kevin McGinty It’s a distressingly common scenario. A corporate laptop containing job applicant data, including social security numbers, is stolen from an employee who has taken the laptop off of corporate premises. Access to the social security numbers makes it possible for wrongdoers to engage in identity theft. Is an applicant’s fear that… Continue Reading

Connecticut Woman Files First Suit Under Federal Law Prohibiting Genetic Discrimination

Posted in Employee Privacy

Written by Jennifer Rubin A Connecticut woman has filed a charge of discrimination under the Federal Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (“GINA”), which prohibits discrimination against employees based upon their status as carriers of genetic information. The woman claims her status as a carrier of the BRCA2 gene, a gene sometimes associated with the elevated risk… Continue Reading

More on last week’s NJ Supreme Court decision -

Posted in Employee Privacy

The decision we blogged about in this space last week is creating quite a bit of buzz in both privacy and employment law circles. My employment law colleagues in our New York office have authored an analysis of the decision here: Employment Alert: New Jersey Supreme Court Finds Privacy Rights in Employee E-Mails And, the… Continue Reading

BREAKING NEWS: NJ Court Upholds Employee E-mail Privacy

Posted in Employee Privacy

In a precedent-setting decision, the New Jersey Supreme Court today ruled that a company should not have read e-mails a former employee sent to her lawyer from a private Web account through her employer’s computer (See November 5, 2009 Privacy and Security Information blog post). According to the Star-Ledger, the court, which determined the company’s… Continue Reading

T Minus 10,080 Minutes and Counting…..

Posted in Employee Privacy

We have just one week to go before all entities that own, store, license — or basically do anything with — personal information of Massachusetts residents must comply with the Commonwealth’s new data security regulations. Things to consider: Have you done your risk assessment? Looked at what you collect and how you collect and how… Continue Reading

Data Privacy Day – Tip #4 – Transactional Best Practices for Lawyers

Posted in Employee Privacy

Written by Michael Arnold and Jennifer Rubin Even though lawyers working on both sides of an M&A transaction during the due diligence phase might immerse themselves in a “confidentiality bubble”, they still must be careful not to disclose or access confidential employee information in the course of that transaction. Attorneys evaluating potential transactions might be… Continue Reading

Data Privacy Day – Tip #3 – The weakest link??

Posted in Employee Privacy

My lunchtime speaking engagement was at the International Association of Privacy Professional’s Boston KnowledgeNet. I had the pleasure to share the panel with Mike Spinney from Six-Weight ( and identity theft guru Robert Siciliano. We had a spirited discussion about privacy training and awareness. You can access their blogs in the panel to the right…. Continue Reading

When employee handbooks don’t tell the whole story…..

Posted in Employee Privacy

  Written by Cynthia and Jennifer The discussion of employer access to employee emails in our September 21 blog entry continues with another appellate court decision about workplace privacy rights. In Stengart v. Loving Care Agency, Inc., the court completely rejected an employer’s attempt to rely upon an email policy to gain access to an… Continue Reading

$1.8 Million Verdict in Pretexting Case

Posted in Employee Privacy

Written by Cynthia and Michael A Cook County, Illinois jury recently awarded $1.8 million dollars to Kathy Lawlor, who claimed that her former employer, North American Corp. of Illinois, violated her privacy rights by hiring a private investigator who fraudulently obtained her telephone records through the use of “pretexting” – or by pretending to be… Continue Reading

What is “reasonable expectation of privacy” in an employment context?

Posted in Employee Privacy

Written by Cynthia and Jennifer A recent decision by the Maine Supreme Court highlights the tension between an employee’s reasonable expectation of privacy in conducting personal business through a company’s computer system and the individual’s right to prevent the company’s publishing of such material. In Fiber Materials, Inc. v. Subilia, the Maine Supreme Court dismissed… Continue Reading