chevron-down Created with Sketch Beta.
June 03, 2021

COVID-19, ransomware attacks, technology issues top ABA Internet of Things meeting

WASHINGTON, June 3, 2021 — The American Bar Association Science & Technology Law Section will hold its sixth annual Internet of Things (IoT) National Institute virtually on June 10-11. The online programs will feature leading legal, technology and cybersecurity experts discussing new federal and state IoT cybersecurity laws, top privacy and security enforcement priorities and other emerging IoT challenges.

The two-day online institute will cover the latest topics in the IoT including regulation, enforcement, legislation, crisis/pandemic; complex legal issues concerning contracts, negotiations, insurance, global supply chain and the environment.

The IoT National Institute brings together corporate representatives, policymakers, academics and lawyers to discuss the latest legal, legislative, regulatory, and liability issues as well as global trends.

What:   Internet of Things (IoT) National Institute     

                 Sponsored by the ABA Science & Technology Law Section

When:  Thursday and Friday — June 10-11

Where: online

Highlights of the meeting include four fireside chats:

Day 1 – June 10

The FTC Is Watching: Outlook for IoT Regulation and Law Enforcement” —Jennifer A. Johnson, partner and co-chair, Internet of Things Group, Covington & Burling LLP; and Andrew M. Smith, partner, Covington & Burling LLP, will discuss how the new management at the Federal Trade Commission may affect IoT, privacy and security, online advertising and marketing, technology platforms, and children’s privacy, and provide legal insights that businesses will need to keep up with in this evolving area. Thursday, 11:15 – 11:45 a.m.

“There Ought to Be a Law? The Need for IoT Privacy and Cybersecurity Legislation” — Former White House cybersecurity policy director Andrew Grotto, now director of Stanford Program on Geopolitics, Technology and Governance; and Jim Dempsey, lecturer at the University of California Berkeley Law School, will discuss the convergence of federal agency cybersecurity guidelines to requirements. They will explore whether the Colonial Pipeline  ransomware attack last month was a watershed moment and answer the following questions: Should Congress act?  Will Congress act or will agencies proceed sector-by-sector? What would cybersecurity legislation look like and how would it be enforced? How would compliance be measured? Thursday, 3:15-3:45 pm

Day 2 – June 11

“Pandemic Platforms: A Case Study from Higher Ed in Designing and Deploying Technology During a Crisis” — Paul Ohm, professor, associate dean for Academic Affairs, and chief data officer at the Georgetown University Law Center, will discuss how he helped guide the nation’s largest law school through the COVID-19 pandemic. His research into privacy and surveillance helped him to turn theory into action as he managed daily decisions about recording policies, contact tracing systems, exam administration, and more. He will reflect on how the decisions made in an emergency can lead to platform design choices that could outlast the crisis.   Friday, 11:15-11:45 am

 “The ABCs of NFTs, IoT, and Entertainment” — Adrian J. Perry, partner and co-chair, Music Industry, Covington & Burling LLP; and Pam Reynoldsexecutive vice president, business & legal affairs, distribution, operations & marketing, MGM, will explore the evolving world of non-fungible tokens (NFTs)(is a unit of data stored on a digital ledger, called a blockchain, which could be  photos, videos, audio, etc.) They will discuss the risks and opportunities from a legal perspective, also will discuss how connected devices could enhance the prospects for using NFTs. Friday, 3:15-3:45 pm

Other programs titles include:

·         “IoT Cybersecurity Legislation Under the Microscope”

·         “Welcome to My World: The Distinct Ecosystems of Consumer and Industrial IoT and Where They Intersect”

·         “The Enforcers: The FTC and State AGs as Privacy and Security Guardians of the Galaxy”

·         “Breaking Down IoT: Addressing Complex IoT Issues in the Real World in Real Time”

·         “Keeping Track: The Internet of Bodies and the Lurking Legal Issues”

·         “Big Data as Big Business in a Connected World”

·         “Raising the Bar, Technically Speaking: From Cybersecurity Standards to IoT Certification”

·         “Left to Our Own Devices: The Pandemic, IoT, and Ethics”

For a complete list of programs, click here. Media can register for the meeting by emailing Betsy Adeboyejo at [email protected]

The ABA is the largest voluntary association of lawyers in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law. View our privacy statement online. Follow the latest ABA news at and on Twitter @ABANews.