Wilson Sonsini adds another FTC privacy pro to growing practice

2 minute read

The Federal Trade Commission building, Washington, D.C. REUTERS/Gary Cameron

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  • Maneesha Mithal joins Wilson Sonsini in Washington, D.C
  • She was associate director of FTC privacy & ID protection unit

(Reuters) - Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati has hired Maneesha Mithal, most recently a leader of the U.S. Federal Trade Commission's privacy and identity protection unit, the firm said on Monday.

Mithal joins as a Washington, D.C.-based partner in the firm's privacy and cybersecurity practice, after more than 20 years at the FTC, including around 12 as associate director of the privacy division.

Silicon Valley-founded Wilson Sonsini is known for advising clients in the technology and life sciences sectors.

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The firm's privacy and cybersecurity practice includes several FTC veterans, including Lydia Parnes, who was previously the director of the agency's consumer protection bureau, and former bureau deputy director Chris Olsen.

Mithal said she "had a hand" in nearly all of the FTC's privacy and security settlements during her time as associate director, a role she left in October.

The FTC has settled privacy and data security matters against companies including Facebook Inc, Equifax Inc and Alphabet Inc's Google in that time.

Mithal oversaw a 40-person FTC team tasked with enforcement of privacy and cybersecurity laws and policy development on issues including artificial intelligence, biometrics, health privacy and ransomware, according to Wilson Sonsini.

Law firms have continued to bulk up privacy and data security-related groups amid an evolving legal and regulatory landscape. Among the recent hires in the area is BakerHostetler's addition of Daniel Kaufman, another former FTC consumer protection bureau leader, in October.

Wilson Sonsini also recently welcomed back cybersecurity partner Beth George after a stint as acting general counsel at the U.S. Department of Defense.

Read more:

Cybersecurity lawyer rejoins Wilson Sonsini from Defense Dept.

Longtime FTC consumer protection pro jumps to BakerHostetler

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Sara Merken reports on privacy and data security, as well as the business of law, including legal innovation and key players in the legal services industry. Reach her at sara.merken@thomsonreuters.com