Protecting Data and Preventing Security Breaches Requires an All-Hands Approach


The best way businesses can protect themselves from big data breaches is to have and implement a comprehensive data security plan that aligns IT, HR, legal and compliance, among other functional areas. The plan should begin with clear and detailed policies and practices for internal personnel and external contractors and vendors, which are communicated regularly and supported by appropriate training, audit and enforcement procedures. Policies should include password protected access, limited to only relevant personnel for the...
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The Designs They Are A-Changin'


Changes are coming to design patent law in the United States. The United States will formally become a member of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) effective May 13, 2015. There are several benefits that arise out of the United States becoming part of WIPO. Presently, it is necessary to file individual applications in multiple jurisdictions to protect industrial designs in each of the jurisdictions. However, the Hague Agreement provides a user-friendly international design application that can contain up to 100...
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La Isla Bonita: Cuban Market Opportunities are Opening to Those In The Know


Cuba is everywhere in the news recently, but few people seem to know how to capitalize on the thawing relations between the island and the United States. Importantly, even fewer U.S. attorneys have any experience with the Cuban government or people, so much of the legal writing on Cuba is off-the-mark. Having lived in Havana for 2 ½ years, and having spent countless hours with government officials and Cuban citizens, I have a unique perspective on the island regarding the growing business opportunities there. Sociolismo...
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Jury Verdict Against Pharrell, Robin Thicke May Blur Lines for Other Songwriters


A federal jury in Los Angeles unanimously found that singers Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke infringed on the copyright for Marvin Gaye’s “Got to Give It Up” when the two wrote their 2013 hit “Blurred Lines.” The jury rendered a judgment of $7.3 million to Gaye’s estate, which is now considering seeking an injunction against further sales of “Blurred Lines” and considering further claims against other Thicke songs. Some musical purists are celebrating the ruling, but perhaps even...
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Under Armour Covers Its Butt by Objecting to ASS ARMOR Mark


In 2013, snowboarder Casey Scherr (“Scherr”) created a line of shock-absorbing athletic shorts designed to protect the tailbone, branding the line “Ass Armor.” Recently, Scherr’s company filed a trademark application for the ASS ARMOR mark, which apparently is causing pain in Under Armour’s backside. The $3 billion athletic apparel maker has responded by filing a trademark infringement lawsuit alleging the two marks are likely to cause confusion in the marketplace. Under Amour has also taken issue...
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Establishing the Ground Rules: How a Terms of Use Agreement Can Protect Your Website’s Content


A well-crafted terms of use agreement is an important component of any company’s online presence. Typically, such agreements first seek to protect the website operator’s content. Thus, within a terms of use agreement, the operator can inform users of how they may use the website and how they may not use a website. Further, if the website allows account registration, the agreement may include a termination clause, which permits the operator to terminate the account and ban the user from the site, typically at the...
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Making the Troll Pay a Toll: New Bill Aims to Reduce Frivolous Patent Litigation


Generally, patent trolls, also known as “non-practicing entities,” are entities that file and own patents without practicing the patented invention. Those entities then lie in wait until they have the opportunity to threaten lawsuits against businesses and entrepreneurs, demanding licensing fees for their patents’ use. For instance, some retailers who provide customers with free Wi-Fi internet have recently been threatened with lawsuits because an entity has alleged that such service violates their patent. The...
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