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FL cyberlaw attorneyWith the widespread daily use of the internet and social media sites of all kinds, people have access to others’ personal information literally at their fingertips and in their pockets, via their cell phones. As a result, cyberstalking has become a danger that can affect nearly anyone.

What Qualifies as Cyberstalking?

Cyberstalking is any type of communication, through electronics, that is directed toward a particular person and gives that person reason to fear for his or her safety or the safety of another party, such as a loved one, friend, or pet. It may also include threats of damage to the victim’s property. Cyberstalking covers anything that may cause the victim “emotional distress,” or anxiety. The harassment may involve physical threats toward the victim or his and/or her family or friends, such as violence or sexual assault, bodily harm or kidnapping, just to name a few examples.

The cyberstalker may use any kind of electronic device to convey the threats and harassment, including phone calls, voice mails, text messages, instant messages by use of computers, cell phones, pagers, and multiple other means of communication. A law passed earlier this year in Illinois added messages sent through social media to their list of cyberstalking qualifications. Hacking is yet another form of cyberstalking that can negatively affect individuals and organizations that are targeted.

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Florida cybersecurity attorneyTo understand why you might need a cyber law attorney now or in the future, take a quick look back. Twenty years ago, were you worried about losing control of your intellectual property because of Etsy or Amazon, or of losing control of your website domain name to a web jacker?

Shift in Transactions From People to Web Impacts Cyberlaw

Have you noticed how many business transactions have shifted from being personal-relationship-driven to being mostly or entirely web-driven? Consider all of these situations where, 20 years ago, you would have insisted on doing business one-on-one, face-to-face, but today you can - and often prefer to - conduct most of this business over the internet:

  • Making a big-ticket purchase like a computer, car, or house;
  • Working with a tax accountant, financial advisor, lender, or lawyer; and
  • Working with a writer, graphic designer, or another provider of marketing or creative services.

Shift in Documentation from Paper to Digital Requires Cyberlaw

Years back, most businesses relied on an exchange of paper documents. While paper documents could be photocopied, they could not be widely disseminated without significant cost and typically did not travel far. Today, we rely much more heavily on electronic document exchanges, and it is far too easy for such documents to be intercepted by hackers, copied, slightly altered, and widely disseminated around the globe very quickly.

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Do You Need to Update Your Website’s Privacy Policy?

Tampa online privacy policy attorneyAs a business owner, you know how important your website is for attracting new customers and generating sales. But are you confident that your Terms of Service and Privacy Policy pages are up-to-date with current laws and fully protecting you from potential lawsuits?

A Privacy Policy is required by law when your website collects customer emails, phone numbers, shipping addresses, or other personally identifiable information (PII). The Terms of Service can be equally important to protect your business from legal liability. This article will focus strictly on Privacy Policy, with a future article addressing Terms of Service.

Consumer Privacy Laws Are Becoming More Strict

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Florida trademark attorneyYou might think “intellectual property” is limited to inventions that a business has patented. But the definition is actually much broader, including such things as:

  • Your website domain name.
  • Copyrighted works of writing, art, or music.
  • Trademarked brand names and logos.
  • The trade dress of your business, which includes unique visual aspects of your website as well as products, packaging, and even building architecture.
  • Trade secrets, including proprietary processes and methods, algorithms, patterns, client lists … any information you would closely guard to keep it out of the hands of competitors.

Here are four questions every business owner should ask and answer with regard to intellectual property:

Do you know the value of your intellectual property? If you really think about the scope of your business, you probably have more intellectual property than you first thought. List your most important IP assets, and ask yourself two questions. First, do I have sufficient protections in place, given the value of this IP? Second, how much am I willing to spend to defend this IP? If a competitor should infringe on your intellectual property rights, you will want to react quickly to avoid potential losses and to collect compensation for any financial damage that may have already occurred. At the same time, you need to take a cost-effective approach to protecting your IP, considering the financial investment and future revenue at stake.

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Posted on in Cyber Crime

b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_356278754.jpgComputer hacking continues to attract a great deal of attention from those charged with keeping company networks safe. However, in May of last year, a computer virus began infecting networks around the world. The never-before-seen malware was disrupting service in the healthcare, automobile manufacturing, telecom and worldwide shipping industries, among others, around the world. While the virus wreaked havoc across the globe, it took but a single computer expert to shut down the spread and potentially save companies billions of dollars.

Anonymous Hacker Hero

In May of 2018, a young man known only by his Twitter handle, “Malware Tech,” was able to do what IT professionals at some of the world’s largest businesses were unable to accomplish. With a few simple keystrokes, he was able to shut down one of the world’s largest cyber-attacks to ever occur.

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Posted on in Cyber Crime

b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-22.jpgEven when you take proactive steps to protect your company’s network and stored data, there are individuals constantly looking for opportunities to expose and exploit any weaknesses. Hacking is a major issue facing companies and, if the news is any indication, electronic thieves and computer hackers are showing no signs of reducing their illegal and damaging activities.

Companies are Being Hit by Hackers

There have been a number of high-profile hacking incidents that made the news over the past few years that impacted major retailers and financial institutions, as well as their customers and clients. The latest company to fall victim was the ride-sharing business, Uber.

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Protecting Your Company from Cyber Attacks

Floridy business cyber security lawyerBusinesses of all sizes are being targeted by hackers and other electronic criminals more and more frequently in modern times. Incidents involving large corporate entities such as Target and Equifax make national headlines, but it is a fact that even small businesses are attacked by hackers. In fact, experts agree that nearly 43 percent of all cyber attacks are launched at small businesses. 

Protecting Your Business

Being unprepared is no longer acceptable, as the cost of repairing your business’s reputation and defending your company from subsequent legal action can drain resources and even result in bankruptcy. Because physical storage of records and data is costly and can require an inordinate amount of space that could be better used for other business purposes, storage of customer information and proprietary company data is frequently converted to some electronic format. This action makes that data vulnerable to breach and theft. Here are some basics steps to follow when considering how to best protect your company’s cyber assets:

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Balancing Biometric Privacy and Technological Advancements

Tampa cyber security lawyer biometricsNo longer is it necessary for one to key-in a password of letters and numbers in order to gain access to computers, smartphones, or other electronically-secured information. The use of one’s facial features, fingerprints, and even their iris for electronic security purposes is becoming more common, yet concerns pertaining to personal privacy and use of stored information is now facing legal challenges.

Wide Use for Biometric Technology  

The use of biometric technology has allowed various businesses to enhance service and security for their customers. Some examples include:

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Posted on in Cyber Crime

cybersecurity, hackers, Florida cyber law attorney, online attacks, Florida cyber lawMore and more companies recognize the value of using the Internet to grow and strengthen their business. Whether for communications, marketing, e-commerce, research, or other purposes, online activity among employees and customers has expanded exponentially. However, with this growth comes the increased threat to information moving along or stored by electronic means. 

Business Activity Has Moved Beyond Laptop and Desktop Computers

Hand-held devices have taken on an increased presence among business operations throughout a variety of industries. From tracking inventory to recording important statistics and other real-time data, the threat to the information stored on these devices is no less real. This may complicate matters for cyber professionals charged with protecting intellectual property

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