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Litigator Philip Yannella Joins Blank Rome as Partner and Co-Chair of the Privacy, Security & Data Protection Practice

Blank Rome LLP is pleased to announce that Philip “Phil” N. Yannella has joined the firm as a partner in the Corporate Litigation group and will serve as co-chair of the firm’s Privacy, Security & Data Protection practice. Phil regularly counsels clients on data privacy and cybersecurity issues relating to the use of digital information with an emphasis on litigating cyber disputes and ensuring compliance with relevant laws. He joins the firm’s Philadelphia office from Ballard Spahr where he was a partner and co-leader of the Privacy and Data Security Group.

“We are excited to welcome Phil to the firm,” said Grant S. Palmer, Blank Rome’s Chair and Managing Partner. “In today’s world, businesses have great responsibility related to managing digital assets, preventing or addressing data breaches, complying with privacy rules, protecting their company and customer digital information, and implementing new and emerging technologies. With Phil joining forces with Sharon Klein to co-lead our global Privacy, Security & Data Protection practice, we have added depth in the three areas where clients are seeking counsel most frequently: litigation, corporate, and regulatory. Phil will be a tremendous asset as we continue to grow our Privacy, Security & Data Protection practice and services.”

Phil advises clients on regulatory compliance, privacy litigation, data breach counseling and investigations, and data governance. He provides clients with a 360-degree view on the transfer, storage, and use of digital information. His clients include financial institutions, media organizations, online platforms, global manufacturers, higher education institutions, and life sciences, construction, tech, and gaming companies.

Phil has counseled and represented clients in a wide variety of privacy and data security litigations including lawsuits filed under the Defense of Trade Secrets Act, Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, Stored Communications Act, Video Privacy Protection Act, Illinois Biometric Information Protection Act, and the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, as well as state wiretap and data breach class actions and website accessibility claims. He has extensive experience coaching clients through data breaches, managing breach notification in all 50 states and more than 35 foreign jurisdictions, and has led the defense of numerous regulatory investigations relating to data breaches, including those brought by state Attorney Generals, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the New York State Department of Financial Services (“DFS”), the UK Information Commissions Office, and Canadian privacy regulators.

“Phil has built a tremendous reputation as a trusted data privacy and cybersecurity advisor and litigator,” said Sharon R. Klein, partner and co-chair of the Privacy, Security & Data Protection practice. “Phil’s experience will help our clients find legal solutions to protect their digital assets, and support the growth of our group.”

In addition, Phil regularly advises clients on compliance with federal, state, and international data protection laws including California, Virginia, Colorado, Connecticut, and Utah state privacy laws, the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act, Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act Security Rules, the General Data Protection Regulation, UK Data Protection Act, UK Age Appropriate Design Code, and ePrivacy Directive. He works closely with banks and other financial institutions on compliance with the privacy and security components of the Gramm Leach Bliley Act, Interagency Guidelines, New York DFS cyber-regulations, and the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard.

“I’m delighted to join Blank Rome and support the Privacy, Security & Data Protection practice alongside Sharon, one of the top privacy and data security lawyers in the field,” noted Phil. “I’m continually impressed by the high caliber of work the firm does in this space for clients across a variety of industries, including the recent and notable Blackbaud settlement agreement. Blank Rome is also growing in smart and strategic ways that complement my practice, particularly in markets like California, Illinois, Texas, and New York. I’m energized by the firm’s commitment to expanding its top-tier, global privacy group and I look forward to contributing to the group.” 

Phil is accredited as a Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP/US). He is a frequent commentator, presenter, and author on legal issues related to data privacy, cybersecurity, and information governance, and has received many awards for this thought leadership. He is the author of Cyber Litigation (Thomson Reuters, March 2021), a first-of-its-kind treatise on data breach, data privacy, and digital rights litigation. Phil is also an active member and frequent speaker for the Sedona Conference Institute. He has been named to The Legal 500 US, Dispute Resolution. Philip earned his J.D. from Temple University James E. Beasley School of Law and his B.A. from Temple University, summa cum laude.