Alston & Bird Global Privacy and Security Network (ABPSN)
When our data privacy and security practice started in the mid-1990s, we quickly realized that many issues we were confronting on behalf of our clients required local expertise and often a local presence. Although we work extensively with most data privacy regimes, many situations arise where having a local expert becomes a necessity. Our firm is one of the few Am Law 50 firms with few significant offices outside the U.S., but that is by design. Our independence allows us the flexibility to work with the best legal experts outside the U.S. in each area of the law, particularly including privacy and security lawyers. Since this is such a unique area of the law, there are very few credible practitioners worldwide—but we have relationships with experts in major jurisdictions across the globe.
As our work for clients with multijurisdictional businesses grew, we called on and collaborated with local law firms in more than 70 countries across the globe. In our efforts to improve, simplify, and streamline our data privacy and security practice, we established a network of law firms who we regularly call on to assist us in advising our clients. This network includes firms we have known and worked with for many years and has many benefits:
A unified approach to managing global data privacy and security issues.
One invoice, in one currency.
Many firms are Chambers Band 1 firms.
Recognized privacy and security experts in key jurisdictions, not just whomever a global firm happens to have in a particular office.
Local U.S. attorneys to manage it all.
The ABPSN is not a static network and has no exclusive members. We are constantly expanding the network and always looking for the best local firms and lawyers.
Most lawyers who counsel on privacy and security issues have general knowledge and familiarity with the major data privacy regimes. For some clients and matters, general knowledge may be sufficient. However, the increasing complexity of privacy matters that companies are facing today, including the often-conflicting nature of international data privacy compliance, requires lawyers who can provide a greater level of focused expertise, as well as relationships with local data privacy regulators. In these and other situations, we are able to call on our network to provide a multitude of legal services.
Collaborating with local counsel to provide strategic compliance advice that contemplates applicable local data privacy regimes.
Specific local knowledge encompassing not only the letter of the law, but also the specific local, regional, and national day-to-day practices, sensitivities, and risks that simply cannot be learned through a book but must be known through experience. This local insight affords unique vision into the characteristics of data protection authorities and regulators across the globe.
Advising on pending legislation and regulations so clients can anticipate and favorably influence laws that may have a significant impact on their operations.
Responding to regulator inquiries and other adverse third-party actions.
Assisting with internal privacy audits and compliance initiatives.