Brazil's data bar
Brazilian data lawyers had a lot on their plate in 2018. Following years of increasing digitalisation and government enforcement against data, the passage of the landmark General Data Protection Law set up the first piece of Brazilian legislation to address data protection overall. It’s no surprise that companies have been clamouring for data advice – and Brazil’s full-service elite and smaller tech-focused boutiques alike have risen to the challenge.
Pinheiro Neto and Mattos Filho Veiga Filho Marrey Jr e Quiroga in particular have been the early pacesetters, with both making a series of eye-catching hires. Full-service firms TozziniFreire and Veirano are also worth noting, while Pereira Neto | Macedo is a household name in the community thanks to a compact team of respected lawyers, one of whom is widely considered the architect of the Marco Civil. Mundie e Advogados, meanwhile, brings its deep experience in telecoms regulation to bear on data protection work, while other boutiques to watch are Opice Blum Bruno Abrusio e Vainzof and Baptista Luz; the former has made its name in the courtroom, while the latter has made the start-up and venture capitalist scene its own.
Several Veirano team members have senior positions at the International Trademark Association, International Bar Association and International Technology Law Association, among others. An office in Brasilia gives the firm ready access to the National Telecommunications Agency and the Ministry of Communications. Veirano’s client list includes the likes of Dell and Crocs, as well as the international law firm Norton Rose Fulbright, for whom the team drafted a guide on Brazilian data rules in August 2018.
TozziniFreire splits its data practice across two teams: Marcela Ejnisman leads a technology and telecoms team within the corporate practice, which deals with matters including data privacy and cybersecurity; and Patricia Martins heads a consumer litigation team, representing clients in civil and criminal proceedings, often including disputes relating to information security breaches. The teams contain 20 associates between them and often work in tandem.
Pinheiro NetoView more
André Giacchetta, José Machado, Raphael de Cunto and Larissa Galimberti lead the data practice at Pinheiro Neto. Giacchetta, Machado and de Cunto were heavily involved in opening a Silicon Valley office in 2018, while the firm recently hired Marcel Leonardi as counsel after an eight-year stint as Google Brazil’s policy head. Leonardi played a key role in negotiations asurrounding the drafting of the LGPD and previously ran his own law firm for over a decade before joining Google.
Pinheiro Neto represents several high-profile companies such as Yahoo!, Facebook, Twitter, Amazon and Apple for transactions and litigation. Pinheiro Neto is currently assisting Uber with a public prosecutors’ investigation into a 2017 data breach, and also represented Yahoo! in lawsuits regarding a data breach. Amazon relied on the firm to help it launch products in the country.
Pereira Neto | MacedoView more
Partners Caio Mário da Silva Pereira Neto, Ronaldo Lemos, Daniel Douek and Olavo Zago Chinaglia lead Pereira Neto | Macedo’sdata practice. Lemos, who is a legal commentator with a regular column and his own TV show, played a key role in drafting Brazil’s Civil Rights Framework for the Internet. The firm, which excels in media, technology and internet law, offers a range of data protection services, including privacy analysis, structuring compliance programmes and advising on the implementation of innovative technology, such as blockchain and digital identity.
Pereira Neto also takes an active role in shaping data regulation in Brazil; it won a research grant from the Brazilian Development Bank and the country’s science, technology and innovation ministry to propose policy on the development and reform of IOT-related regulation. The team has advised clients such as WhatsApp, Uber, Telefónica and Tempest Security Intelligence.
Opice Blum Bruno Abrusio e VainzofView more
Luis Chaves leads a privacy team of nine associates at technology boutique Opice Blum alongside Renato Opice Blum, Marcos Bruno, Juliana Abrusio, Rony Vainzof, Camilla Jimene and Caio César Lima, who also focus on data matters. The firm provides services in the areas of cyber fraud, digital compliance, data protection and telecoms, offering companies measures that mitigate data-related risks and information management, which includes compliance and due diligence.
Opice Blum is perhaps best known as a litigation firm. Outside that core area, the team also assists clients in developing new business models and cybersecurity policies. The firm works for a range of different clients such as international banks, airlines, e-commerce conglomerates and telecoms groups; it helped several ISPs revert a court order blocking a messaging app in 2015.
Mundie e AdvogadosView more
Mundie earned its name as a go-to for telecoms regulation mandates, and has used that prowess to develop a respectable data law offering. Ana Beppu leads the team and is currently the vice president of the Brazilian Association of IT and Communication Law. She involves the team in projects regarding technology, media, internet and data protection across a range of different business sectors.
Mundie helps clients with legal opinions, compliance, public policy work and administrative investigations. Beppu’s team has built data monetisation programmes for major mobile providers and conducted LGPD assessments for credit bureaus, satellite operators, financial data businesses and social networks. It currently assists a major biometric data processor in an investigation carried out by a public prosecutor. The firm has a diversified clientele, encompassing companies in the telecoms, technology, computer hardware and software, and e-business sectors, as well as in banking and finance.
Mattos Filho Veiga Filho Marrey Jr e QuirogaView more
Fábio Kujawski, Paulo Brancher and Thiago Sombra take the lead on data law matters at full-service titan Mattos Filho, and are supported by eight other partners and 15 associates. Sombra joined in June 2017, while both Brancher and Kujawski were partners at TMT boutique Barretto Ferreira Kujawski e Brancher Advogados (now part of Azevedo Sette Advogados) before Kujawski joined Mattos Filho in 2013, with Brancher following earlier this year.
The technology team handles a range of matters. In 2017, the firm acted for health insurer Bupa in relation to a major data breach. The firm also helped Google settle a civil public action involving the collection of personal data by Google Street View cars. The firm assisted WhatsApp on the legality of its end-to-end encryption messaging service, which has frustrated law enforcement efforts in the country. The firm also advised the messaging app before the Supreme Court after it was suspended three times in Brazil for short periods in 2015 and 2016.
Baptista LuzView more
Renato Leite Monteiro previously worked at the Council of Europe’s Data Protection Commissioner and is now a principal partner within Baptista Luz’s data protection practice, leading a team of 13 associates. Monteiro works alongside partner Pedro Ramos, who is also an internationally known net neutrality scholar. The boutique firm specialises in providing advice to technology start-ups, but is equally adept at providing advice more established companies, such as Facebook, Expedia, airplane manufacturer Embraer and ridesharing company 99.
Baptista Luz works for several household brands, and aims to make businesses aware of their data risks. In 2017, it launched a ‘Privacy Hub’, which aims to share relevant material to different sectors that look to anticipate regulatory changes and invest in privacy, in addition to ‘Startup Space’ – a website that publishes articles to help emerging companies better assess their legal risks. The firm also supports the Brazilian Startup Association and holds partnerships with several entrepreneurships, such as the Brazilian Angel Association and Google Campus.