Data breach liability for Pennsylvania employers of all sizes expanded with a recent Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision in Dittman v. UPMC. __ A.3d __, No. 43 WAP 2017, 2018 WL 6072199 (Pa. 2018). The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has reformed two legal principles that have protected employers against liability when they find themselves victims of third party hackers. In the wake of the Dittman decision, Pennsylvania employers – of all sizes – can no longer sit idle and should heed the opinion as a strong warning to review, assess, and revamp the adequacy (or inadequacy) of their data security protections, policies, and procedures.
Companies are increasingly faced with class actions for alleged violations of one of the “big three” —the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), or the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). Although several thousand of these claims are filed each year, FCRA claims related to background checks is the only category that has grown since last year.