• Hackers have  breached servers of major law firms including Wall Street firms Cravath Swaine & Moore and Weil Gotshal & Manges, and federal authorities are investigating if they managed to steal confidential information to use for insider trading, according to people with knowledge of the case. (Wall Street Journal)

• In a growing exploit dubbed “Friday fraud,” hackers have stolen some £85 million ($122.3 billion) from UK law firms in the past 18 months after figuring out that the firms, which often lack strong security, have a habit of moving money through their bank accounts on Fridays, according to insurance company QBE. (Financial Times)

• Most law firm mergers are poorly managed, based on defensive rather than strategic reasons, and don’t benefit clients or partners , according to a recent report. (American Lawyer)

• President Barack Obama Tuesday renewed an executive order that authorizes him to impose economic sanctions on cybersecurity violators, observing that the U.S. government and companies still face a state of emergency due to online attacks. (Law 360)

 

Legal Market

• Debevoise & Plimpton Tuesday launched a new publishing platform, called Debevoise Women’s Review ,featuring Q&As, event coverage and blog posts focused on the professional development and achievements of women lawyers and business professionals. (Big Law Business)

• Volkswagen AG misled environmentally conscious customers with a “Clean Diesel” Super Bowl advertisement and product placement featuring Gwyneth Paltrow even as it cheated on emission standards, according to a U.S. Federal Trade Commission lawsuit . (Bloomberg )

• Slaughter and May, Linklaters and Berwin Leighton Paisner top a new “suggested” ranking of the best managed law firms in the United Kingdom, based on financial health indicators. (The Lawyer)

• A Maryland appeals court disbarred former Dorsey & Whitney partner Kristan Peters-Hamlin for “repeated intentional dishonesty” in a 2007 trade secrets case for which  she received a seven-year suspension in New York. Peters-Hamlin continues to practice in Connecticut. (American Lawyer)

• Rap star Lil Wayne is suing his former partner, Universal Music Group, for $40 million in damages and royalties he says he should have been paid for discovering stars like Nicki Minaj, Drake, and Tyga. (Forbes)

• Dozens of bills are under consideration across 18 states that would boost poor people’s rights to a lawyer at state expense in certain civil cases, according to the National Coalition for a Civil Right to Counsel. (New  York Times/Associated Press)

 

SCOTUS

• The U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments next month in a dispute over some $2 million in legal fees stemming from seven years of litigation in which Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe represented a Thai bookseller pro bono against copyright claims by publisher John Wiley & Sons. (Big Law Business)

• In one of its highest profile cases since the death of Justice Antonin Scalia changed its dynamic, the U.S. Supreme Court deadlocked 4-4 in a ruling that allows more than 20 states to continue to require public-sector workers to help fund the union that represents them. (Big Law Business/Bloomberg News)

• During his tenure on the D.C. Circuit court, U.S. Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland has rarely second-guessed  the National Labor Relations Board, the agency charged with enforcing the National Labor Relations Act. (Big Law Business/Bloomberg BNA)

Garland Tuesday met with Sen. Mark Kirk of Illinois, who is among a group of 16 Senate Republicans that have agreed to meet with the chief judge, though most of those still say they agree with the party leadership’s refusal to move forward with the confirmation process until after the November presidential elections. (National Law Journal)

• In an unusual five-paragraph order, the Supreme Court Tuesday called for additional briefing in a divisive clash over contraceptives and Obamacare, hinting that at least one justice may be looking for a possible compromise. (Bloomberg News)

 

Laterals and Moves

• Amidst already low morale in its legal department, Lloyds Bank has laid off an undisclosed number of junior lawyers at its London headquarters, after laying off some 25 lawyers last year, as part of an overall restructuring in which it has shed about 9,000 jobs. (The Lawyer)

• Bracewell’s new managing partner, Greg M. Bopp, said the firm plans moves to expand , both organically and through lateral hires, in a number of key industry sectors and practices, starting “in the next couple weeks.” (Big Law Business)

• Ashurst has hired two London-based partners way from Herbert Smith Freehills for its global team for technology, media and telecommunications, including the team’s leader, Nick Elverston, and Amanda Hale. (The Lawyer)

 

Technology

• Some  48 top firms were targeted by a Ukraine-based Russian hacker seeking to trade on M&A information stolen from law firms, and who named Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, Kirkland & Ellis, Sidley Austin and Sullivan & Cromwell among potential targets, according to reports. (American Lawyer)

• The FBI is not saying how it extracted data from an iPhone linked to last year’s San Bernardino terror attack, and meanwhile Apple Inc. has to fix a security problem for which has no information. (Apple Insider)

• Audio: Don Aplin, attorney and managing editor of Bloomberg BNA’s privacy and data security publications, discusses whether the FBI is now legally obligated to reveal how it hacked into the iPhone. (Bloomberg)

• Some 84 percent of respondents to a recent survey said they have adopted a framework to manage their companies’ cybersecurity, while the federal government’s recommended set of best practices  is the cybersecurity framework that most companies said they are planning to adopt, according to the poll of 338 U.S.-based IT and security professionals. (Big Law Business)

• Many of 657 recent data breach incidents reported in California for 2012 to 2015 resulted from security failures   due to known vulnerabilities , according to a recent report by the state’s attorney general, which suggests companies must have data security measures to comply with California’s data protection law. (The Recorder)

• Whether they know it or not, legal tech companies have taken on positions in the century-old debate over whether legal disputes can be interpreted mechanically, or must be assessed morally by judges. (Big Law Business)

• Singapore and Brunei have taken pioneering moves to establishing the world’s first paperless electronic court rooms . (Legaltech news)

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