Girard Sharp to Lead Accellion Data Breach Case Against UC Regents


Girard Sharp on September 23 was appointed lead counsel in a proposed class action against the Regents of the University of California and Accellion, Inc. arising from a data breach that exposed the sensitive personal information of thousands of individuals in the University of California community.

Plaintiffs allege the hack occurred because UC and Accellion neglected to secure personal information of individuals affiliated with the university, including employees and their dependents and beneficiaries, retirees and their beneficiaries, and students and their families.

The UC system uses Accellion—a cloud solutions company—to collect and transfer personally identifiable information. In December 2020 and January 2021, Accellion announced data breaches that compromised highly sensitive personal information, including Social Security numbers and medical and financial information. Private information taken in the UC hack has already been disclosed on the internet: Plaintiffs were alerted by credit monitoring services that their information was discovered on the dark web. Accellion has blamed its customers like UC for the breach, claiming they should have upgraded to one of Accellion’s newer products.

The Superior Court judge presiding in the case, the Honorable Evelio Grillo, appointed Girard Sharp to lead the plaintiffs’ executive committee, alongside Wolf Haldenstein Adler Freeman & Herz LLP and Morgan & Morgan.

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