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Legal Hackers Workshop: Protecting Privilege & Encryption for Lawyers

  • Oct 24, 2013 · 7:00 PM
  • This location is shown only to members

Earlier this year, revelations emerged suggesting that the US government, through its National Security Agency, has infrastructure in place to collect and process online communications. Do these revelations affect the longstanding doctrine of attorney-client privilege? Whether they do or do not, how can attorneys use encryption mechanisms to thwart the threat of third-party surveillance?

This month, the New York Legal Hackers will host a topical discussion and workshop on these issues. The first part of our discussion will flesh out third-party surveillance's effect on the attorney-client privilege doctrine. The second part will serve as an overview of encryption techniques that could be beneficial to legal practice. Our panel of experts hopes to field your questions and shed some light on these important issues.

Our panel will include:

Alison Arden Besunder - Founder, Principal Attorney of Arden Besunder P.C.

Nicholas Merrill - Founder and Director of the Calyx Institute

Jed Davis, Principal at Law Office of Jonathan E. Davis LLC


Alison Arden Besunder - Founder, Principal Attorney of Arden Besunder P.C.

Alison Arden Besunder is the founder and principal attorney of Arden Besunder P.C. and founder of IPSA, a social media community exclusively for law students and lawyers. Her practice focuses on litigation, trusts and estates planning and litigation, and intellectual property. Alison served as Chair of the Task Force on Privacy for the New York State Bar Association. The Task Force produced a 300-page report examining the impact of various privacy laws on six practice areas. Prior to founding her own firm Alison was a litigation partner at a well-known Manhattan firm, where she successfully represented fashion retail and luxury companies and well-known trademark owners in the battle against counterfeiting, helping to achieve an important breakthrough in obtaining federal court injunctions against landlords of twenty-eight buildings on Canal Street in New York City. Alison’s work on behalf of Louis Vuitton led to a front page article in the January 31, 2006 edition of The Wall Street Journal, titled “Bagging Fakers and Sellers – Makers of Luxury Goods Try New Legal Tactics Against Those Who Aid Counterfeiters.”

Nicholas Merrill - Founder and Director of the Calyx Institute

Nicholas Merrill founded Calyx Internet Access Corporation in 1995. Calyx Internet Access was one of the first commercial Internet service providers operating in New York City. Within a few years, Calyx opened a sister company in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Calyx pursued relationships with and worked with many non-profit organizations on a pro bono basis and also had a number of blue chip for-profit businesses in its client roster including Mitsubishi Motors of America, Snapple, Ikea and Tanqueray. In 2004, after receiving a demand for information from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Nick became the first party to ever challenge the constitutionality of the National Security Letters provision of the USA PATRIOT Act. The litigation resulted in the judicial invalidation or narrowing of several controversial surveillance provisions, and it led to significant legislative changes as well. It also led to a Department of Justice internal investigation that uncovered thousands of instances of abuse. In 2010, after winning a partial release from the gag order, Nick founded The Calyx Institute – a non-profit organization whose goal is to reform the Telecommunications industry with regard to privacy and freedom of expression.

Jed Davis, Principal at Law Office of Jonathan E. Davis LLC

Jed Davis is an attorney whose law practice focuses on investigation, advocacy and advice in cyber-driven cases, including hacking, theft of intellectual property and data breaches. He served for nearly a decade as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Eastern District of New York, where he oversaw prosecutions of cyber-crimes, business frauds and international organized crime [masked]) and before that, for three years as an Assistant District Attorney in the Rackets Bureau of the Manhattan District Attorney [masked]).   He began his legal career as a litigation associate at Cahill Gordon & Reindel [masked]).  Prior to establishing the Law Office of Jonathan E. Davis in May 2012, Jed was a Managing Director at Kroll Associates, where for four years, he oversaw cyber- and other investigations for institutional clients in the U.S. and abroad.   He is a graduate of New York University School of Law and Yale College. 

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  • owen h.

    I really enjoyed listening to the lawyers and seeing how the law turtle and the technological hare will come to an agreement on where to draw the finish line.

    October 24, 2013

  • Jen R

    Argh, root canal caught up with me today. Hope to see you next time!

    October 24, 2013

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