Wake Up Call: Ashley Madison Lawyers Up After Breach

• Avid Life Media, the Toronto-based parent company of Ashley Madison, is turning to a trio of high-powered firms to pick up the pieces following the purported disclosure of more than 32 million users, including DLA Piper, Barnes & Thornburg, and Canada’s Stikeman Elliott. (American Lawyer)

• An internal memo at Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz describes a pilot program that will track its attorneys work activity. (Above the Law)

• For the second time this year, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is proposing subtle tweaks to its post-grant trial procedures. It is seen as a sign that the PTAB is willing to hear out and respond to concerns. (The Recorder)

• In an important ruling on the foreign commerce clause and the courts’ reach abroad, a federal appellate panel on Wednesday upheld the constitutionality of a federal law prohibiting citizens from engaging in non-commercial, illicit sexual conduct after traveling to a foreign country. (National Law Journal)

 

Legal Market

• Scottish firm McClure Naismith, which has been in financial difficulty since the recession hit, is expected to “appoint administrators next Friday (28 August), with a number of other firms lining up to take its most profitable teams.” (The Lawyer)

Hitachi Rail Europe is looking to hire its first ever general counsel, who will sit on the Executive Board, alongside global CEO Alistair Dormer, and will assume a co-secretarial role in time. The GC is expected to take responsibility for contracts, suppliers and customers, in addition to outsourcing work to the company’s legal panel. (The Lawyer)

• “I’m not yet convinced that many [U.S.] firms have figured out how to make money with overseas offices,” said Fox Rothschild’s firmwide managing partner, Mark Silow in the first part of a video series. (Big Law Business)

• Herbert Smith Freehills has announced plans to implement “agile working” in London following a succesful trial in March, in which everyone was invited to work from home one day a week. (The Lawyer)

• Mark Cohen, CEO of LegalMosaic, argues: “It’s time for PPP to be moth-balled as a law firm metric. A high PPP does not necessarily tell a good story for anyone except its partner beneficiaries and those rainmaker laterals in lower PPP firms looking for a bump. Client metrics are what matter most.” (Big Law Business)

• Five Vietnamese law firms have come together to form the country’s first alliance of law firms, named the LawTeam Alliance. (Asian Legal Business)

 

Moves

• Paul Verkuil, former dean of Tulane University Law School and the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, and former president of the College of William and Mary, is now leaving as head of the Administrative Conference of the United States, a federal agency first launched in 1964 as a nonpartisan government and legal think tank of sorts, aimed at making the administrative state function better. (National Law Journal)

• Schulte Roth & Zabel has hired a private equity partner in Washington; Honigman Miller Schwartz & Cohn LLP enticed a former Kirkland & Ellis partner to join its private-equity practice group in Chicago and other moves. (Big Law Business)

 

Dewey

• “A Wachovia Bank executive testified Wednesday about his bank’s deteriorating relationship with Dewey & LeBoeuf as the ill-fated firm was buffeted by the financial crisis and unrealistic compensation demands by its legacy partners.” Prosecutors are expected to rest their case any day now. (American Lawyer)

 

Legal Education

• Seattle University School of Law will open a satellite campus next week, enabling third-year law students to spend a full academic year in Anchorage, Alaska — the only state that lacks a law school. (National Law Journal)

 

Technology

Searching through large amounts of data remains the largest obstacle to locating potentially relevant data in eDiscovery, according to an Exterro poll of more than 208 In-House participants. The second biggest obstacle was identifying and accessing data sources. (Big Law Business)

• Baker & McKenzie has become the first global law firm to adopt the latest version of SAP as its billing and financial solutions platform, according to the firm. SAP is used by 86 percent of global Fortune 500 companies, as well as a significant number of the firm’s clientele. (Legal Technology News)

• Teri Radichel, who authored a study on the Target breach for the SANS Institute, points out that a breach is a reminder that companies should be protecting their critical assets. (Legal Technology News)

 

Miscellaneous

• Facebook Inc. will have home court advantage in a trio of privacy class actions claiming the company violated an Illinois law governing the collection of biometric data with its “tag suggestion” feature. (The Recorder)

• Lindsey Cameron, a former Schulte Roth & Zabel associate, is set to publish her first novel, “BIGLAW,” which tells the story of Mackenzie Corbett, who is almost two years into her job as an associate at a premier Manhattan law firm, pulling in a big salary with her eyes set on a prestigious secondment with one of the firm’s top clients, when she suddenly finds herself the focus of a “devastating investigation” and her dream job begins to turn into a nightmare. (Big Law Business)