May 06, 2020 Feature

The Consequences of Documents That Are Incorrectly [Redacted]

Mistakes can lead to potentially significant consequences for both lawyers and their clients.

Andrea L. D’Ambra and Susana Medeiros

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Last year, lawyers for former Trump advisor Paul Manafort inadvertently published information about their client’s meetings with Konstantin Kilimnik, a Ukrainian man the Federal Bureau of Investigation believes may be a member of a Russian intelligence agency unit connected with the hacking of the Democratic National Committee’s email server. They meant to redact these passages, but they didn’t do so properly before filing. A tech-savvy reporter from the Guardian caught the error, and the lawyers and their client made the news. In another case, this one between Facebook and a bikini-photo app called Six4Three, the Wall Street Journal caught defective redactions that revealed that Facebook had at one time considered selling access to users’ data for as much as $250,000 per company.

Illustration by Dave Klug

Illustration by Dave Klug

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