Kathleen Porter is an intellectual property and technology lawyer in the firm's Business Transactions Group and former chair of the firm’s Intellectual Property + Technology Group. Her practice straddles the areas of intellectual property, business transactions, trade regulation, and Internet law and includes import/export control issues, such as compliance and enforcement, competition, privacy, and data security. Kathleen has twice been named the Best Lawyers® Information Technology Law "Lawyer of the Year" in Boston, for 2020 and 2013.
Her clients include precision manufacturing, life science, food + beverage, energy, consumer products, software, Internet and e-commerce, and other technology-driven businesses.
Kathleen has extensive experience in structuring and negotiating sophisticated domestic and cross-border commercial transactions, including license, OEM, distribution, co-packing, manufacturing, and development agreements; acquisitions; supply, distribution outsourcing, and partnering arrangements; strategic alliances; business opportunities; and joint ventures.
Intellectual Property and Technology
Kathleen advises clients on competition and regulatory issues, including price restraints and discrimination, volume discounts, MAP and other pricing programs, territorial and exclusive licensing restrictions, joint buying programs and other trade association or group activities, consumer protection, promotions, and advertising. She also counsels clients on competition law compliance, including the preparation of competition law premerger filings, and coordinates the preparation of foreign competition law filings.
In addition to the cross-border transactional representation of domestic and international clients, Kathleen regularly advises foreign companies on their entry into the U.S. market, including corporate and regulatory issues such as entity selection, regulatory filings (including CFIUS and Department of Defense filings), structuring commercial and co-packing agreements and marketing and sales issues, intellectual property protection, and day-to-day legal advice.
Kathleen counsels businesses on the development and implementation of data security and privacy practices to comply with the patchwork of laws and rules applicable to the collection, use, safeguarding, sharing, and transfer of protected or personal data. She regularly structures arrangements with promoters, marketers, website exchanges, and other third parties for the purchase, sale, sharing, and safeguarding of personal data. She prepares and negotiates representations, warranties, and indemnities regarding personal or protected data and privacy and data practices. Kathleen also assists clients with privacy audits and works with third-party certification organizations to obtain certification of companies' privacy practices. She guides clients through internal investigations to assess and address notice and other obligations regarding privacy breaches. Kathleen often works closely with our litigation attorneys to manage external investigations such as those by federal or state regulators.
Additionally, Kathleen is active in trade and privacy-focused professional organizations and attends professional, FTC, and state AG-sponsored workshops and programs to keep apprised of trade and privacy initiatives, trends, and legislative agendas as well as behavioral and dynamic marketing and emerging uses of personal data.
A regular speaker and author on data privacy and technology issues in commercial transactions, Kathleen has been a panelist at the Annual PLI Privacy Data Security Conference in Chicago for seven years, speaking on IT transactions. Over the last several years, she has also spoken and authored articles on the use of mobile devices in the workplace (BYOD), including for the American Bar Association's Business Section, the International Legal Technology Association, and Network World. In 2022, she presented on Cybersecurity and Data Privacy at the SCG Legal 2022 Midyear Meeting in Lisbon, Portugal. Kathleen is also a regular contributor to the firm's Data Privacy + Security Insider blog. For several years prior to law school, Kathleen worked for a Northeast food and beverage manufacturer.