Date/Time: Thursday, March 21, 2:00 – 6:00 p.m. EST
Location: Arnold & Porter LLP, 601 Massachusetts Avenue, NW

Topic14th Annual ABA/FCBA Privacy & Data Security Symposium: “Tech Frontiers in Communications Privacy”

New technologies are rapidly changing the way consumers, corporations, and governments approach personal data and privacy. Myriad headlines about massive data breaches, resulting in the theft of sensitive personal and corporate information, pockmarked 2018. In the age of cyber-espionage and terrorism, governments’ abilities to monitor networks for security threats run up against the proliferation of encryption. As more aspects of our lives and our nation’s economy become more interconnected by networks, dominated by massive platforms, and influenced by machine learning and automated decision-making, the stakes in getting data collection, security, and use right have never been higher. This event will examine the intersection of three areas of technical innovation—networks, platforms, and AI—with privacy and data security, bringing in a range of views from expert panelists to inform and debate while provoking thought on evolving use cases, threats, and solutions.


2:00 – 2:05 p.m.         Opening Remarks and Introduction

2:05 – 3:10 p.m.         Session I: Data Protection Across Communications Networks

Voice communication, text messaging, and broadband travel over networks subject to a storm of cyber threats. But differences exist in the way that our various forms of communication are regulated, such as between voice and broadband. Regulatory regimes affect the privacy and security of networks, but how might those regulations change to adapt to new technologies? This panel will examine the emerging trends in networks, such as deep packet inspection and end-to-end encryption, and discuss the successes and failures of the laws that govern them.


Adrienne Fowler, Symposium Chair for the ABA Forum on Communications Law; and Partner, Data Privacy, Security & Use Practice, Harris, Wiltshire & Grannis LLP

Beth Williams, Assistant Attorney General, Office of Legal Policy, U.S. Department of Justice; Member, U.S. Department of Justice Cyber-Digital Task Force (invited)
Alan Butler, Senior Counsel, Electronic Privacy Information Center

Additional speakers to be announced

3:10 – 3:20 p.m.         Break

3:20 – 4:30 p.m.         Session II: Platforms and Data Protection

Perhaps most concerning to the average citizen (and politicians) are the losses of privacy and data facilitated by the big platforms many use, including social media websites, online shopping platforms, and video streaming services.  Most notably, Facebook was roiled this past year by controversy over its practices of sharing user data with third parties, which led to congressional hearings and much public consternation.  This panel will explore how the use of personal data by platforms is regulated, and how it could be improved in a way that protects consumers while allowing companies to provide innovative services that improve people’s lives and drive our nation’s economy.

John Heitmann, Co-Chair, Annual Symposium; Co-Chair, FCBA Privacy & Data Security Committee; and Partner and Chair, Communications Group, Kelley Drye & Warren LLP

Yael Weinman, Associate General Counsel for Privacy, Verizon
Heather West, Assistant Director for Public Policy, Mozilla
Additional speakers to be announced

4:30 – 4:40 p.m.         Break

4:40 – 6:00 p.m.         Session III: AI and Data Protection
Artificial intelligence stands to revolutionize the way we live and work in every sector.  But many are disquieted by the thought of AI’s proliferation, made especially concerning by the notion of handing over the reins of power to a computer, with little-to-no human intervention.  AI also learns best by ingesting reams of data, therefore demanding serious consideration of how we harvest and use that information.  Will an AI-dominated future be more benevolent, having been freed from the caprice and inefficiency of humans?  Or will it simply harness those biases and exacerbate them?  The AI and Privacy panel will delve into these questions and more.

Jameson Dempsey, Fellow, Stanford Center for Legal Informatics – CodeX

Roy Austin, Partner, Harris, Wiltshire & Grannis LLP; former Deputy Assistant to President Obama for Urban Affairs, Justice, and Opportunity
Additional speakers to be announced

SYMPOSIUM SPONSORS: Harris, Wiltshire & Grannis LLP

ABA PASSPORT SPONSORS: Baker Hostetler; Ballard Spahr LLP; Covington & Burling LLP; Davis Wright Tremaine LLP; Gray Television, Inc; Jackson Walker; Katten Munchin Rosenman LLP; Kelley Drye & Warren LLP; Pepper Hamilton LLP; Sheppard Mullin; The E.W. Scripps Company; Wiley Rein LLP; Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP

HOST SPONSOR: Arnold & Porter LLP


$225 for Private Sector FCBA/ABA Forum Members

$100 for Government/Academic/Transitional FCBA/ABA Forum Members

$50 for FCBA/ABA Forum Student Members

$400 for Non-Members

Please contact Adrienne Fowler, Symposium Chair for the ABA Forum on Communications Law, for more information about sponsorships:  Please contact Janeen Wynn for more information about registration:


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