National security is no longer just a concern for those wearing a uniform or holding a security clearance. The United States has increasingly pursued its national security goals by leveraging private industry across every sector. The result is a web of laws, regulations, and executive orders imposing complex obligations governing whom businesses can transact with, what materials can be traded, what activities must be reported, when and how businesses must assist government investigations, and what businesses must do to protect themselves and their customers from malicious nation-state actors.
Alston & Bird’s National Security & Digital Crimes team consists of numerous former senior U.S. government officials who have decades of experience in national security and cybercrime. Together, we have represented clients on issues concerning data requests from law enforcement and the intelligence community under the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, Stored Communications Act, Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, USA PATRIOT Act, and federal and state wiretap statutes. We also advise U.S. and international companies and individuals on a wide range of national security statutes and regulations, including export control regulations, foreign policy sanctions and asset controls, and the Foreign Agents Registration Act. We counsel our clients on sensitive matters such as cybersecurity threats from nation-states and ransomware gangs, compliance with evolving cybersecurity regulations, and participation in highly classified government programs.
As the government continues to use national security authorities to impose ever-broader obligations on the private sector, you need savvy counsel to appropriately guide when to push back. Our team of former national security officials is experienced in negotiating favorable resolutions to disputes over the scope of government data requests and other national security regulations. When necessary, our trial lawyers will go to court to protect your rights and the privacy of your customers. This may involve defending you in criminal or civil enforcement actions or bringing affirmative litigation to challenge legal process, administrative decisions, or sanctions designations. Our attorneys are well-versed in the special complexity inherent in criminal and civil litigation that raises national security issues.
Sometimes our clients find themselves the victims of digital crimes perpetrated by nation-states or criminal organizations. When that happens, we help them use all available means to protect their platforms, their customers, and their intellectual property. Our team of former cyber and intellectual property prosecutors lead investigations to develop admissible evidence of crimes committed against our clients. Depending on the needs of the client, we can use this evidence to pitch a criminal case to federal law enforcement or to file civil litigation against the perpetrators. If the criminals are beyond the reach of U.S. courts, we can still use the legal process to take over computer infrastructure that is being used against our clients and to compel internet hosting services to take down content that violates the intellectual property of our clients or the privacy of their customers.