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ISDA Morning Briefing: Ethics Issues for Lawyers Concerning Electronic Transmittals of Confidential Client Information

1.5 CLE Credit Hours Available (New York)

Transitional and Nontransitional

Ethics and Professionalism Category

Wednesday, September 13, 2017
Global Financial Conference Center
New York



8:00 AM


Registration and Continental Breakfast




 8:30 AM


Welcoming Remarks



Katherine Darras, General Counsel, ISDA




8:45 AM


Ethics Issues for Lawyers Concerning Electronic Transmittals of Confidential Client Information



  • Cyberhacking Threats to Law Firms
    • FBI Alert on cyber threat to international law firms
    • Major law firms cyberhacked
    • ABA Cybersecurity Task Force
  • Relevant ABA Ethics Confidentiality Rules
    • ABA Model Rule 1.1 – lawyers must competently keep abreast of new technology
    • ABA Model Rule 1.6 – preserving confidential client communications
    • ABA Model Rule 1.6(c) – reasonable efforts to prevent unauthorized disclosure of confidential client information
    • ABA Model Rule 1.6(c) – lawyers must act competently to safeguard confidential client information
  • ABA Formal Opinion 477R (2017): Emerging Ethics Issues
    • Lawyers must exercise reasonable efforts to prevent improper disclosures when communicating electronically about clients
    • Reasonable efforts factors include sensitivity of the information, disclosure risks, costs, the difficulty of implementing safeguards and the potential adverse effect on a lawyer’s performance
    • Reasonable efforts security measures for matters of normal, low and higher sensitivity
    • Understanding the nature of the threat and how client confidential information is transmitted and stored
    • Using reasonable electronic security measures
    • Determining how electronic communications about clients should be protected
    • Labeling client confidential information
    • Training in technology and information security
    • Conducting due diligence on vendors providing communication technology
    • Assessing risks, identifying and implementing risk-appropriate security measures and verifying the implementation of security measures
    • Updating security measures
    • Consulting with clients as to how to use communications technology and informing them of the risks involved in transmitting information electronically
    • Practical security measures, including encrypted emails, not opening unknown attachments and the use of secure document portals



Michael Sackheim, Senior Counsel, Sidley Austin LLP




10:15 AM


Discussion Concludes


Agenda is subject to change

$ 50 U.S. (member) / $ 100 U.S. (non-member)
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Global Financial Conference Center, 360 Madison Avenue (entrance on 45th Street), 17th Floor, New York, NY 10017 Phone: (212) 901-6000.  Please find a map to the venue here.



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