David T. Cohen


  • JD, summa cum laude, Boston College Law School, 2007; Order of the Coif; James W. Smith Award for Highest Academic Rank; Editor in Chief, Boston College Law Review
  • AB (Philosophy and Music), magna cum laude, Brown University, 2003; Phi Beta Kappa; Meiklejohn Prize in Logic


  • New York, 2014
  • District of Columbia, 2011
  • Massachusetts, 2008

Court Admissions

  • Supreme Court of the United States, 2012
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, 2008
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, 2016
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, 2015
  • Certified as CIPP/US by International Association of Privacy Professionals. This certification is not granted by any governmental authority.
  • Honorable Thomas L. Ambro, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit (2007 - 2008)
  • International Association of Privacy Professionals
  • The Sedona Conference, Working Group 11 on Data Security and Privacy Liability

David T. Cohen


David’s practice focuses on complex litigation, particularly in the area of privacy and data security. He has extensive experience working with corporate clients that have suffered data breaches or have been accused of privacy violations, defending them against class actions and claims asserted by payment card brands and representing them in connection with federal and state government investigations. In addition, David advises clients on a range of privacy and data security compliance matters, including the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard. As an experienced litigator, David also has represented clients in a variety of business disputes outside the privacy context, including appellate, antitrust, securities, and regulatory matters. 

Outside of the office, David is an active classical vocal music performer in the New York City area.


  • Representing national grocery chain in defending consumer class actions filed over unauthorized network intrusions suffered in 2014.
  • Represented an international hotel chain in defense of a Federal Trade Commission lawsuit stemming from unauthorized network intrusions into certain hotels of the chain. Favorable settlement reached in December 2015.
  • Represented a national credit card payment processor in issuing bank class actions filed across the nation related to a data security breach announced in 2009.
  • Represented an international computer entertainment company in government investigations stemming from computer network attacks.
  • Represented a hotel service provider sued in class action for alleged privacy violations under the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act relating to payment card information allegedly contained in reservation confirmation emails. The case was dismissed with prejudice.
  • Represented a major telecommunications company in defending an antitrust class action that alleged unlawful tying and unjust enrichment in connection with cable set-top boxes.
  • Represented a real estate investment trust targeted by a putative class action alleging violations of the Securities Act of 1933 in connection with an IPO registration statement. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed dismissal of the suit in a precedential ruling, Hutchison v. Deutsche Bank Securities Inc., 647 F.3d 479 (2d Cir. 2011).
  • Represented 80 higher education institutions as amici in U.S. Supreme Court litigation regarding ownership of federally funded inventions. 


Ropes & Gray Alerts

  • “PCI SSC Releases Version 3.1 of Data Security Standard,” Ropes & Gray Alert (May 19, 2015) 
  • “Online Retailer Zappos.com Reaches Settlement with Nine Attorneys General Over Data Security Breach,” Ropes & Gray Alert (January 15, 2015)
  • “FTC Complaint Against Medical Laboratory Signals Agency’s Continued Intent to Assert Authority in Data-Security-Breach Actions,” Ropes & Gray Alert (September 11, 2013)
  • “Federal Trade Commission Chairwoman Calls for Increased Scrutiny of Privacy Practices for Consumer Data,” Ropes & Gray Alert (August 28, 2013) 
  • “FTC Actions Against Payment Processors Heighten Legal Risks for Service Providers in Privacy Cases,” Ropes & Gray Alert (June 28, 2013)
  • “FCC Rules Sellers May Be Vicariously Liable for Third-Party Telemarketers’ Violations of Telephone Consumer Protection Act,” Ropes & Gray Alert (May 17, 2013)
  • “On-Line Sales of Shipped Goods Held Outside Reach of California’s Song-Beverly Credit Card Act,” Ropes & Gray Alert (May 6, 2013)
  • “Massachusetts High Court Decision Regarding ZIP Codes Increases Consumer Litigation Risk for Retailers,” Ropes & Gray Alert (March 19, 2013)
  • “Supreme Court’s Clapper Decision Raises Bar for Standing in Data Security Breach Litigation,” Ropes & Gray Alert (March 4, 2013)
  • “FTC Settles with Device Manufacturer HTC America over Charges that HTC Products Had Security Design Flaws,” Ropes & Gray Alert (February 28, 2013)


  • Speaker, “Practical Tips from 2015 Data Breach Litigation Decisions and Enforcement Actions,” ACC-SFBA CLE Lunch Seminars (January 2016)
  • Presenter, “Developments in Private Litigation and Regulatory Enforcement Stemming from Data Security Breaches,” Lawline Seminar (August 13, 2015)
  • Speaker, “Ropes & Gray West Coast Lunchtime Legal Briefing Teleconference - Navigating the Telephone Consumer Protection Act - When Can You Make That Call or Send That Text?” (September 2013)
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