July 18, 2006

Venable Adds Noted Internet Policy, Marketing, and Privacy Attorneys Alisa Bergman and Stuart Ingis

6 min

Reuniting a potent team of Internet, marketing, and privacy lobbyists and practitioners, Venable LLP has added Alisa Bergman and Stuart Ingis, two top attorneys who focus on privacy, marketing, and Internet law and policy for leading companies and associations.

In joining Venable as partners, Ms. Bergman and Mr. Ingis reunite with their former colleague Emilio (Milo) W. Cividanes and reconstitute one of the premiere privacy practices, adding further depth to Venable's legislative and government practices. 

“Privacy compliance and data protection laws are unquestionably two of the major concerns affecting every business in the country, and the issues regarding customer, employee and corporate privacy are becoming as complicated as they are highly sensitive,” said Jeffrey D. Knowles, head of Venable’s Government Division. “Few people know the ins and outs of privacy and related Internet law as well as Stu, Alisa, and Milo, who have been at the center of key policy debates and passage of every federal privacy, marketing, and Internet law.  Our new partners will be a great addition to the firm in continuing to expand in these areas.”

Ms. Bergman and Mr. Ingis lobby and advocate for a cross-section of leading Internet, media, and information services companies on a host of federal and state privacy and Internet-related legislation and rulemaking proceedings.  They have drafted testimony and provided counsel for numerous CEOs of leading global information and media companies appearing before Congress, and have drafted comments and counseled clients in connection with proceedings before a number of federal agencies.

Among the major legislation and regulations that Ms. Bergman and Mr. Ingis have worked to shape are the Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act (CAN-SPAM); the Telemarketing Sales Rule; the financial privacy provisions of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act; the Junk Fax Prevention Act; the Electronic Signatures Act (E-SIGN); the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act; and the Department of Commerce’s Safe Harbor Program for compliance with the European Union’s Data Protection Directive.  Mr. Ingis also has been involved in the Federal Communications Commission’s implementation of the landmark Telecommunications Act of 1996 as it applies to the Internet.  Ms. Bergman and Mr. Ingis are very involved in legislation currently being considered to address data security breaches, spyware, and other privacy-related issues.  In addition, they have advised numerous clients regarding security breach notification obligations in connection with state, federal and international requirements, several of which were high profile in nature, and worked with clients to develop incident response plans and strengthen security policies and procedures. 

"Our depth of legislative experience on privacy protection and e-commerce issues affords us the unique ability to counsel our clients on compliance with existing law, emerging industry trends, best practices, and changes in the regulatory environment," said Ms. Bergman.  "Our goal is to maximize Venable's existing strengths in areas including its consumer protection and legislative practices, thus enhancing the firm's ability to offer clients a full range of legal and legislative guidance and services.  This is particularly important given the continued growth of the Internet and the increasing significance of e-commerce."

“With its great representation of major corporations and associations in the consumer protection area, Venable is a perfect platform for our practices,” said Mr. Ingis, who is well known for his work on behalf of the Direct Marketing Association and its members for which Venable has for many years also provided important counsel.  “The firm has substantial depth in consumer work, representing a Who’s Who of corporateAmerica.  Venable also has one of the elite legislative and government affairs practices, and we are thrilled to once again be in the same firm with Milo.  The laws that define Internet commerce and how businesses can use personal information will only continue to grow in importance in coming years and Venable is well positioned to be a market leader in this space.”

Ms. Bergman is widely regarded as a leading attorney on children's privacy and marketing-related issues, most recently representing a cross-section of leading marketing and advertising associations, as well as major media companies in the FTC's review of the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act.  Ms. Bergman also is very active in global and trans-border privacy issues for a number of notable international companies, conducting risk assessments, advising on global strategies, and developing legal solutions that harmonize businesses’ needs with emerging legal and self-regulatory requirements and standards.

Ms. Bergman has represented numerous Internet and e-commerce clients before the Federal Trade Commission, and has worked with them to develop and implement comprehensive strategies to address legal requirements and achieve their privacy protection, security, e-commerce, and marketing business objectives.  She also has worked with clients to develop solutions to address the challenges raised by cross-border information flows, consistent with business needs and risks, advised on mitigation strategies, and assisted with government investigations.

In addition, Ms. Bergman has conducted major assessments of clients’ privacy and information practices to analyze compliance, and also has worked extensively with companies to develop programs that address industry self-regulatory guidelines and seal programs.

Mr. Ingis has led industry coalitions on the implementation of the CAN-SPAM Act and numerous other Internet-related issues.  Co-author of Privacy Protection in the United States: A Survey, he has worked on Internet law since the inception of the commercial Web.  Mr. Ingis was a primary draftsperson of the advertising and consumer protection section of the American Bar Association’s millennium plenary paper on Internet jurisdiction.  He also worked with the Electronic Commerce and Consumer Protection Group, which is composed of many large companies that drafted a code of best consumer protection principles and an approach to jurisdiction online.

Mr. Ingis assisted the Direct Marketing Association in the drafting of its self-regulatory guidelines governing the use of health information.  In addition, he helped draft the policies for the BBBOnLine Privacy Seal Program of the Council of Better Business Bureaus.

Mr. Ingis was formerly a fellow at the Villanova Center for Information Law in Philadelphia.  In that capacity, he co-founded Project Bosnia, aimed at deploying the Internet and promoting the rule of law in Bosnia following the signing of the Dayton Accords.

Ms. Bergman received her J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center and her B.A. from University of California, Los Angeles. Mr. Ingis received his J.D. from Villanova University and his B.A. from Hamilton College.  

One of the American Lawyer’s top 100 law firms, Venable LLP has attorneys practicing in all areas of corporate and business law, complex litigation, intellectual property and government affairs. Venable serves corporate, institutional, governmental, nonprofit and individual clients throughout the U.S. and around the world from its headquarters in Washington, D.C. and offices in California, Maryland, New York and Virginia. For more, visit www.Venable.com.