BBA Announces Privacy and Cybersecurity Conference

The Boston Bar Association’s inaugural Privacy & Cybersecurity Conference will bring together attorneys from private practice and in-house legal departments to network and discuss key topics and trends in privacy and cybersecurity.

Held at the Courtyard Marriott in Boston on May 24 , this full-day conference will cover a wide range of topics from data breach response and litigation to compliance and transactional issues. Panelists will discuss new developments in the legal and regulatory landscape, while providing strategies to effectively prepare and respond to your client’s needs and offer insights into challenges and opportunities ahead.

Please contact Maggie DeMoura at if you are interested in attending this program. Registration opens soon!

To give you a sneak peek of what's on the agenda in May, we asked the conference's advisory committee members to weigh in on the issues of the day. 

Brenda Sharton - Goodwin Procter
“Companies have had privacy & cybersecurity top of mind for some time now, yet the breaches keep on coming and increasing in sophistication.  Gone are the quaint days when hackers were simply after credit card information and ransom demands were low.   This conference provides an opportunity to hear how to protect your company from today’s threats and even tomorrow’s.” 

Brenda Sharton, a senior partner with Goodwin, is a first chair trial lawyer with over 25 years of experience. Ms. Sharton is the Chair of Goodwin’s Privacy + Cybersecurity practice as well as its Business Litigation practice. She counsels and represents public and private corporations and their boards in complex commercial litigation, arbitrations and civil government/regulatory matters. Ms. Sharton also is a nationally recognized expert, sought after speaker, and thought leader in the area of privacy law. She has handled in excess of 200 data privacy breach investigations and has been lead counsel on landmark privacy litigation. She has counseled and represented public and private corporations and their boards in complex commercial litigation, arbitration, and civil government / regulatory matters. She has been recommended for her financial services litigation and privacy work by The Legal 500 United States and featured in U.S. News-Best Lawyers for her commercial litigation work. 

Heather Sussman - Ropes & Gray
“The day will be packed on some of the hottest topics in privacy and cybersecurity today -- from artificial intelligence and digital advertising, to all things cyber, ransomware and the state of privacy and data breach litigation today.  We will cover what’s happening with the EU’s evolving data protection regime, and of course forecast the new U.S. Administration’s impact on these issues in the weeks and months to come.”

Heather Egan Sussman is co-head of the privacy and data security practice at Ropes & Gray’s Boston office. Her practice focuses on privacy, cybersecurity and information management, and she is ranked by Chambers USA and The Legal 500 United States as a leader in her field. Heather routinely guides clients through the existing patchwork of U.S. federal and state laws, including FCRA, ECPA, TCPA, HIPAA, CAN-SPAM, GLBA and California’s Online Privacy Protection Act, state breach notification laws, state information security laws, as well as existing self-regulatory frameworks, including those covering online advertising and payment card processing. She manages teams of talented local counsel around the world to deliver seamless advice for clients that operate across many jurisdictional lines.

Sharton and Sussman will join the following experts in the field on the advisory committee:

Sara Berkson - Vertex Pharmaceuticals
Sara Cooper Berkson is Senior Director, Assistant General Counsel at Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated, where she advises the company on global privacy issues, including readiness for the upcoming EU General Data Protection Regulation. Sara has practiced in the privacy space since the advent of HIPAA in 2003, focusing on the implications of various international, federal, and state privacy laws on the health care and life sciences industries.  She has spent time both in private practice and in-house in the biotech industry, advising clients on a myriad of regulatory issues, including privacy and human subjects research, fraud and abuse, and general pharmaceutical compliance.  Sara spent several years in the healthcare group at Ropes & Gray, LLP, before moving on to Genzyme Corporation, where she worked on privacy related issues in the context of the company’s genetic laboratory, rare disease registries, and clinical trials.  Immediately prior to joining Vertex, Sara helped lead the life sciences group at the Boston office of Verrill Dana LLP.  Sara received her J.D. from Yale Law School and clerked for the Honorable Lewis A. Kaplan in the Southern District of New York.


Colin Zick - Foley Hoag
Colin Zick’s practice is focused on health care and compliance issues, and often involves the intersection of those two subjects in investigations, administrative proceedings or litigation. His work has had a particular emphasis on compliance issues related to life sciences, pharmaceutical and medical device companies, laboratories, hospitals, providers, and provider organizations. This compliance work includes helping clients establish and maintain effective compliance programs. Colin also defends clients in disputes alleging kickbacks, overpayments, and billing and coding problems, and represents clients before state health care licensing and regulatory entities.

Peter Lefkowitz - GE Digital
Peter Lefkowitz is Senior Data Rights Management Counsel and Chief Privacy Officer at GE Digital, where he supports GE’s Predix platform, internet-connected products and predictive analytics solutions.   Peter served as Chief Privacy Officer at GE Corporate from 2013-16. Prior to joining GE, Peter was Vice President of Privacy & Security Legal and Chief Privacy Officer at Oracle.   He clerked for the Honorable Robert E. Coyle, Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of California. Peter is Vice Chairman of the International Association of Privacy Professionals and a member of the Board of Directors at Jewish Family & Children’s Services of Greater Boston.  Peter holds a Bachelor of Arts in History, magna cum laude, from Yale College and a law degree from Harvard Law School.