MassTLC Launches Policy Community

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Tuesday, February 27, marked MassTLC’s first policy community meeting, which was hosted at Carbonite. Why a new policy community? As privacy, security, patents, net neutrality, non-competes, and many more operational and business processes are subject to policy and regulation, every company – regardless of size – must be aware of what’s happening and, when possible, have a seat at the table.

Our first meeting focused on how tech companies can and should work with law enforcement to ensure that customer trust and privacy are addressed at the same time as compliance with state, federal, and international law. 

Sara Cable, Director, Data Privacy & Security and Assistant Attorney General – ‎Office of the Massachusetts Attorney General, kicked off our discussion with an overview of the State’s process of serving civil subpoenas to companies, often in the form of Civil Investigative Demands (CID). Sara described the process and the State’s goal of building relationships and working with companies in a collegial way to get the information that is needed.

Justin O’Connell, Assistant United States Attorney, ‎United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts, echoed much of the State’s willingness to build relationships and work with companies on federal matters. Justin shared both civil and criminal processes, and explained the differences between a subpoena and a warrant.

The second half of the meeting was spent discussing the Microsoft vs. FBI case heard the same morning by the US Supreme Court. Attendees discussed possible repercussions for technology companies, depending upon the outcome, and the ways in which companies are working to reconcile US law versus European law.

We will be taking much deeper dives into these topics and many more over the year, starting with a three-part series in April.

More information on the series can be found here.