Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Melodia

Mark Melodia

Partner - Data Strategy, Security & Privacy, Holland & Knight

Mark S. Melodia is a privacy, data security and consumer class action defense lawyer in Holland & Knight's New York office and serves as the head of the firm's Data Strategy, Security & Privacy Team.

Mr. Melodia has defended more than 85 putative class actions - including as lead defense counsel in multiple multidistrict litigations (MDLs) - arising from alleged consumer privacy violations, data incidents and allegations of data misuse. He has represented a major toy company on a variety of privacy and consumer protection issues, including the defense of digital products for younger children and in a COPPA investigation before the Office of the New York Attorney General.

Mr. Melodia is currently defending a global manufacturer of smart household devices against a putative class action arising from the alleged improper and undisclosed collection, storage, use and sale of private consumer information. He routinely represents clients responding to government privacy investigations before the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), state attorneys general and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ). He has also guided clients in a wide range of industries through several hundred data incidents over the past dozen years.

Mr. Melodia advises clients on their obligations and helps them operationalize the requirements of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) as well as federal and state laws in the U.S. He consults with boards, executive teams and insurance carriers on these issues.

Mr. Melodia is advising clients - including a global consumer products company and several e-commerce platforms - on the impact of the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) on business operations and product offerings.

Please visit http://www.hklaw.com for more information.

Mr. Melodia can be contacted at +1 212-516-3583 or mark.melodia@hklaw.com

Coming up in December 2019...

Hotel Law: A Labor Crisis and Cyber Security

According to a recent study, the hospitality industry accounted for 2.9 trillion dollars in sales and in the U.S. alone, was responsible for 1 in 9 jobs. In an industry of that scope and dimension, legal issues touch every aspect of a hotel's operation, and legal services are required in order to conform to all prevailing laws and regulations. Though not all hotels face the same issues, there are some industry-wide subjects that are of concern more broadly. One of those matters is the issue of immigration and how it affects the ability of hotels to recruit qualified employees. The hotel industry is currently facing a labor crisis; the U.S. Labor Department estimates that there are 600,000 unfilled jobs in the industry. Part of the problem contributing to this labor shortage is the lack of H2B visas for low-skilled workers, combined with the difficulty in obtaining J-1 visas for temporary workers. Because comprehensive immigration reform is not being addressed politically, hotel managers expect things are going to get worse before they get better. Corporate cyber security is another major legal issue the industry must address. Hotels are under enormous pressure in this area given the large volume of customer financial transactions they handle daily. Recently, a federal court ruled that the Federal Trade Commission had the power to regulate corporate cyber security, so it is incumbent on hotels to establish data security programs in order to prevent data breaches. The lack of such programs could cause hotels to face legal threats from government agencies, class action lawsuits, and damage to their brand image if a data breach should occur. These are just two of the critical issues that the December issue of Hotel Business Review will examine in the area of hotel law.