Privacy and Data Protection


Michael Rubin is a partner at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, where he co-chairs the firm's privacy and data protection practice and specializes in Internet law and strategy. Michael routinely counsels emerging and established companies on novel issues of unsettled Internet and privacy law, and he represents them in complex regulatory investigations and class action litigation in the United States and around the globe.

  • In re: Google Inc. Street View Electronic Communications Litigation. Lead counsel for Google in this multidistrict litigation against Google, which is comprised of more than a dozen putative class action suits challenging the acquisition of publicly broadcast Wi-Fi data by Google's Street View vehicles from open and unencrypted wireless networks. The lawsuit alleges that Google violated the federal Wiretap Act.
  • White v. LG Electronics, Inc. Lead counsel for LG Electronics (LGE) in this putative class action that alleges LGE's SmartTVs operate in ways that violate the federal Video Privacy Protection Act and various state laws. Plaintiffs make the same allegations against Samsung and Sony.
  • Henson v. Turn Inc. (U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California) and Kay v. Turn Inc. (Superior Court of California for the County of Los Angeles). Lead counsel for Turn in these putative class action lawsuits in federal and state court, which allege that Turn, a provider of an online advertising technology platform, and Verizon, one of Turn's data partners, used "super cookies" in violation of state privacy and consumer protection laws, the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, and the Video Privacy Protection Act.
  • Howard v. DJI Technology, Inc. (E.D. Cal.). Lead counsel for DJI in this putative class action alleging that the camera on DJI Phantom 3 drones failed to record at the resolution that DJI advertised. Plaintiff asserts various state law claims.
  • In re: Google Inc. Cookie Placement Consumer Privacy Litigation. Lead counsel for Google in this complex, multi-defendant multidistrict litigation, which was made up of more than 20 putative class actions that arose from allegations that Google improperly placed cookies on certain web browsers. Plaintiffs asserted claims arising under the federal Wiretap and Computer Fraud and Abuse Acts, as well as various California state laws. The district court granted Google's motion to dismiss all claims with prejudice, and the Third Circuit remanded two state law claims. The district court approved the parties' settlement of the case, which has been appealed on an objector to the Third Circuit.
  • Foley v. LG Electronics, Inc. Lead counsel for LG Electronics (LGE) in this putative class action, which alleged that various LGE electronic ovens do not operate in compliance with their stated "Sabbath Mode" feature. Plaintiff's claims were dismissed with prejudice.
  • Sives v. DJI Technology, Inc. (M.D. Pa.). Lead counsel for DJI in this putative class action, which alleged that a firmware update to DJI's Phantom 2 drone caused the camera to cease working.
  • In re: Nickelodeon Consumer Privacy Litigation. Lead counsel for Google in this multidistrict litigation, which was comprised of six putative class action lawsuits alleging that Internet users under age 13 who visited three Viacom-owned and operated websites received cookies that enable Viacom and Google to track certain web-based activities. Plaintiffs' claims against Google arose under the federal Wiretap Act and Video Privacy Protection Act, as well as state laws. The court dismissed plaintiffs' claims with prejudice.
  • In re: Google Inc. Android Consumer Privacy Litigation. Lead counsel for Google in this multidistrict litigation, which was made up of eight putative class action lawsuits and involved claims that Google's Android operating system or apps downloaded to Android devices mishandled user information, including information about users' locations. After a series of motions to dismiss, plaintiffs voluntarily dismissed their claims with prejudice.
  • Smith v. Facebook et al. Lead counsel for BJC Healthcare in this multi-defendant lawsuit, which alleged that various healthcare organizations improperly disclosed the plaintiffs' information to Facebook in referrer headers. Plaintiffs asserted claims under various federal and state laws.
  • Viacom v. YouTube and English Premier League v. YouTube. Counsel to YouTube in these consolidated copyright infringement actions, which challenged YouTube's operations. In addition to securing multiple summary judgments for YouTube, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati secured orders barring the recovery of punitive damages in copyright infringement actions, requiring that foreign plaintiffs register their copyrights in order to seek statutory damages under the Copyright Act, and denying the motion for class certification in the Premier League action. The firm also secured orders protecting Google's source code and users' private videos from disclosure during discovery.
  • Lead counsel for a consumer electronics company in a series of global investigations in North America (at the federal and state levels), Europe, and South America into a client's collection of data through a connected consumer entertainment device.
  • Lead counsel for a consumer Internet company in a series of global investigations in North America (at the federal and state levels), Europe, Asia, and South America concerning data collection practices.
  • Lead counsel for an advertising technology company in privacy investigations at the federal and state levels, and by a self-regulatory group.
  • Lead counsel for clients in various state attorney general investigations and inquiries regarding privacy, data protection, and alleged misrepresentations.
  • Lead counsel for multiple clients in responding to congressional inquiries concerning the companies' practices.
  • Google
  • LG Electronics
  • Spotify
  • Symantec
  • DJI
  • Lyft
  • Hawaiian Airlines
  • J.D., University of Michigan Law School
    Cum Laude
  • B.A., Foreign Affairs, University of Virginia
    With Distinction, Minor in Spanish
  • Recognized as one of the Daily Journal's "Top 20 Lawyers Under 40" in California for 2014
  • Named in the 2014-2017 editions of Northern California Super Lawyers
  • Honored by Law360 as a "Rising Star" in privacy law in both 2012 and 2013
  • Selected for inclusion on Northern California Super Lawyers' list of "Rising Stars" in 2011
  • State Bar of California
  • Numerous Federal Trial and Appellate Courts
  • U.S. Supreme Court

Contact Information

One Market Plaza
Spear Tower, Suite 3300
San Francisco, CA 94105
Phone | 650-849-3311

Email | Michael Rubinmrubin@wsgr.com

Areas of Expertise

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