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David G. Ries

Of Counsel
fax +1 412.394.2555

David G. Ries has devoted his legal career to helping organizations traverse complex environmental, technology, and data protection challenges.

David focuses on supporting data security and privacy clients by providing innovative solutions, designing a strategy for implementing comprehensive compliance programs and for responding to security incidents and regulatory actions and court claims relating to confidential business, employee, and customer data.

Information governance, including document storage and destruction, is multifaceted and constantly changing as individual regulatory bodies redefine the rules and court rulings place new responsibilities on businesses. David earned a distinguished reputation among his clients for his ability to understand the intricacies of governance and to provide actionable and sustainable recommendations.

David’s extensive experience and understanding of the evolution in cybersecurity law, as well as his position as a member of the American Bar Association’s Cybersecurity Legal Task Force, make him a sought-after speaker in cybersecurity circles. He is the co-author of Locked Down: Practical Information Security for Lawyers, Second Edition, and Encryption Made Simple for Lawyers. He is also the editor of eDiscovery, Fourth Edition, and a contributing author to Information Security and Privacy: A Legal, Business and Technical Handbook, Second Edition.


J.D., cum laude, Boston College Law School, 1974, Member, Boston College Industrial and Commercial Law Review
B.A., magna cum laude, Boston College, Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, 1971


E-Discovery Special Master, U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania

Allegheny County Bar Association (Past Chair, Technology Utilization Committee, Past Chair, Environmental Law Section; Member, Civil Litigation and Federal Court Sections)

Pennsylvania Bar Association (Member, Environmental, Mineral and Natural Resources Law and Civil Litigation Sections)

Member, American Bar Association Law Practice Management Division (past member of Division Council); ABA TECHSHOW Board (2005 – 2008)

Member, American Bar Association Section of Environment, Energy and Resources, Cyberspace Law Committee, Litigation Section, Science and Technology Law Section, e-Discovery and Digital Evidence Committee, and Information Security Committee

Board of Directors, Pennsylvania Bar Institute

Trustee and Past President, Energy and Mineral Law Foundation

International Society of Environmental Forensics

Editorial Board, Environmental Forensics (a peer reviewed journal)

Member, InfraGard, Pittsburgh Chapter (Board of Directors 2006-2016)

Information Systems Security Association

Hearing Committee Chair and Member, Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania (1997-2003)

Member, ILTA LegalSEC Council

Fellow, American College of Law Practice Management

State Bar Licenses


Court Admissions

U.S. District Ct., W.D. of Pennsylvania
U.S. Court of Appeals, 3rd Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals, 6th Circuit
U.S. District Ct., W.D. of Michigan
U.S. District Ct., E.D. of Michigan

Articles & Alerts


  • Guest Speaker, “10 Startling Cybersecurity Statistics and What They Mean for the Future of Law Firms,” Digital Detectives Podcast, Legal Talk Network (November 17, 2023)
  • Panelist, “Government Agencies and How They Can Help Us,” Three Rivers Information Security Symposium (TRISS) (October 13, 2023)
  • Instructor, “Cybersecurity and Privacy for Attorneys,” Technology for Law Practice for the University of Iowa College of Law (September 2023)
  • Co-presenter, “Cybersecurity Ethics: Safeguarding Client Data,” Allegheny County Bar Association (June 30, 2023)
  • Co-presenter, “Cybersecurity for Attorneys: Start with the Basics,” for the American Bar Association (June 20, 2023)
  • Co-presenter, “Document Management and Compliance 2023,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute (June 2023)
  • Co-presenter, “Ethically Handling the Dizzying Array of Cybersecurity Threats,” Virginia State Bar Virtual TECHSHOW (April 24, 2023)
  • Presenter, “Cybersecurity Law Update,” Information Systems Security Association (ISSA), Pittsburgh Chapter (March 2023)
  • Co-presenter, “Safeguarding Client Data in Today’s Emerging Hybrid Practice,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute, Elder & Estate Law Symposium (February 2023)
  • Guest Speaker, “It’s a Good Time for a Cybersecurity Checkup,” Digital Detectives Podcast, Legal Talk Network (January 20, 2023)
  • Presenter, “Privacy and Cybersecurity for a New School Year” (August 19, 2021)
  • Co-presenter, “Ransomware 101 For Lawyers: Protection, Response and Recovery,” American Bar Association (September 17, 2020)
  • Guest Speaker, “Work-At-Home and Remote Access – It’s Time for a Security Review,” Digital Detectives Podcast, Legal Talk Network (June 18, 2020)
  • Presenter, “Avoiding Technology Nightmares,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute (August 2020)
  • Panelist, “The Ethics of Law Firm Cybersecurity in a Work-from-Home World,” Wyoming State Bar, ALPS Insurance, the Knoxville Bar Association, the California Lawyers Association IP Section, the Virginia State Bar, and the Arizona Women Lawyers Association (July-December 2020)
  • Presenter, “Cybersecurity Practices That Won’t Bust Your Budget,” Michigan Institute for CLE’s 60th Annual Probate & Estate Planning Institute (May and June 2020)
  • Presenter, “Information Security Law Update,” Information Systems Security Association (ISSA), Pittsburgh Chapter (March 2020)
  • Panelist, “Professional Responsibility Considerations,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s eDiscovery Update (March 2020)
  • Panelist, “Anatomy of a Data Breach: Analyzing Past Breaches to Minimize Risk,” American Bar Association (February 2020)
  • Presenter, “What is ‘Reasonable Security’? – Understanding the Emerging Legal Standards,” Three Rivers Information Security Summit (TRISS) (October 11, 2019)
  • Presenter, “Ethical Issues in Mineral Title,” Rocky Mountain Mineral Foundation’s Mineral Title Examination Institute (September 2019)
  • Panelist, “Cyber Responsibilities of Lawyers and Law Firms,” International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC) Annual Meeting (July 9, 2019)
  • Presenter, “Electronic Communications Best Practices,” and “Safeguarding Client Data: Ethical and Legal Obligations in a Breach-a-Day World,” State Bar of Montana’s Law and Technology Summit (June 2019)
  • Panelist, “State Law Implications of Federal Regulatory Change,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s Environmental Law Forum (April 2019)
  • Presenter, “Anatomy of a Data Breach: Analyzing Past Breaches to Minimize Risk” and “Security Practices That Won’t Bust Your Budget,” ABA TECHSHOW (February 2019)
  • Presenter, “Business E-Mail Compromise – Best Practices for Prevention and Response,” (January 2019)
  • Moderator, “Balancing Individual Privacy and Public Safety in the Accessibility of Cell Phone Data,” Wecht Institute of Forensic Science and Law and InfraGard-Pittsburgh (November 2018)
  • Panelist, “Preparing for Your Data Breach – Yes It’s Coming,” College of Law Practice Management’s 2018 Futures Conference, Cybersecurity: This Way Be Dragons (October 2018)
  • Presenter, “Utility Cybersecurity,” ABATE Annual Meeting (October 2018)
  • Presenter, “Cyberinsurance – Options and Coverage,” ILTA’s LegalSEC Summit (June 2018)
  • Panelist, “Drinking Water, Infrastructure and Environmental Justice,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s Environmental Law Forum (April 2018)
  • Presenter, “Cyber Security: Protecting Corporate Data in a Breach-a-Day World,” Michigan Manufacturers Association Law Symposium (February 2018)
  • Presenter, “Cybersecurity for Tax Professionals,” Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants’ Western Pennsylvania Tax Conference (January 2018)
  • Presenter, “Safeguarding Client Data in a Breach-a-Day World,” Institute for Energy Law’s 16th Annual Energy Litigation Conference (November 9, 2017)
  • Presenter, “Protecting Your Client’s Data: Ethics, Security and Practicality,” 43rd Annual Notre Dame Tax and Estate Planning Institute (October 26, 2017)
  • Presenter, “Safeguarding Client Data in a Breach-a-Day,” DRI’s Cybersecurity and Data Privacy Seminar (September 2017)
  • Panelist, “New ABA Ethics Opinion on Securing Electronic Communications,” “Your Law Firm Has Been Breached, Now What?” and “Ethics of Keeping Your Confidential Data Safe,” American Bar Association Cybersecurity Webinars (July 2017)
  • Presenter, “Encryption is Simple, Easy and Cheap- and May be Ethically Required” and “Digital Transactions: E-Signatures, E-Contracts and Authentication,” Virginia State Bar TECHSHOW (April 2017)
  • Course Planner/Moderator, “Digital Forensics in the Courts,” Wecht Institute of Forensic Science and Law and InfraGard-Pittsburgh (March 2017)
  • Presenter, “eDiscovery: Professional Responsibility Considerations,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s eDiscovery Program (March 2017)
  • Speaker, “Encryption for Lawyers: Its Time Has Come,” University of Richmond Journal of Law and Technology’s (JOLT) Symposium on Cyber Security: Protecting Against Cyber Threats and Data Breaches Through Encryption and Regulation (February 2017)
  • Presenter, “Safeguarding Client Data in a Breach-A-Day World,” Institute for Law and Technology Cybersecurity and Data Privacy Law Conference (January 2017)
  • Presenter, “Securing Documents: Encryption, eSignatures and Other Ways to Protect Client Information,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s Employment Law Institute West (November 2016)
  • Presenter, “Encryption for Lawyers: The Time has Come,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s Business Law Institute (November 2016)
  • Presenter, “Cyber Risk Management and Liability Issues,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s Business Insurance CLE (August 2016)
  • Panelist, “Incident Response in a Law Firm” ILTA’s LegalSEC Summit (June 10, 2016)
  • Panelist, “Effective and Ethical E-Discovery,” Allegheny County Bar Association’s Bench Bar Conference (June 2016)
  • Panelist, “Locked Down: The Evolving Duty of Competence & Information Security,” Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers Mid-Year Meeting (February 2016)
  • Course Planner/Moderator, “What’s in Your Mobile Device? Forensic Science in the Digital Age,” Duquesne University Law School’s Wecht Institute of Forensic Science and Law and InfraGard-Pittsburgh (January 2016)
  • Course Planner/Presenter, Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s Identity Theft Program (January 2016)
  • Panelist, “E-Discovery Ethics: Emerging Standards of Technological Competence,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s Employment Law West Program (November 2015)
  • Presenter, “Competence in Technology: What the Ethics Rules Require,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s Oil & Gas Colloquium (September 2015)
  • Presenter, “Encryption for Lawyers: Its time Has Come,” ABA Annual Meeting (August 2015)
  • Panelist, “The Ethics of Mobile Security: Protecting Client and Health Data Outside the Office” and “The New Era for Healthcare Privacy and Security,” ABA’s 16th Annual Conference on Emerging Issues in Healthcare Law (March 2015)
  • Moderator, “Social Media in the Courts,” Wecht Institute of Forensic Science and Law and InfraGard-Pittsburgh (January 2015)
  • Presenter, “What is “Reasonable Security”? – Emerging Legal Standards,” ISACA Pittsburgh Chapter (October 2014)
  • Presenter, “Safely and Ethically Navigating the Cloud,” ABA Annual Meeting (August 2014)
  • Presenter, “The Ethical Implications of NSA Surveillance for Lawyers,” Energy & Mineral Law Foundation’s 35th Annual Institute (June 2014)
  • Panelist, “Ethical Obligations – A Lawyer’s Duty of Competency” and “Sophisticated Technology Issues,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute/Allegheny County Bar Association 3rd Annual eDiscovery Symposium (June 2014)
  • Course Planner/Panelist, “BYOD: Bring Your Own Device (or Disaster)” and “Mobility, the Cloud, and Ethics,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s Technology Institute (June 2014)
  • Presenter, “ESI in Environmental Matters: E-Discovery Basics, Developments, Difficulties with Compliance,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute Environmental Law Forum (April 2014)
  • Panelist, “Maintaining Client Confidences in a High-Tech World,” ABA Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources Law’s 43rd Spring Conference (March 2014)
  • Presenter, “Professional Ethics: Hot Topics of Concern for Oil & Gas Attorneys,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s 5th Annual Oil and Gas Colloquium (September 2013)
  • Presenter, “Locked Down: Information Security for Attorneys,” ABA Annual Meeting (August 2013)
  • Panelist, “Locked Down: Security for Cloud Services and Mobile Devices,” ABA Midyear Meeting (February 2013)
  • Presenter, “Computer Forensics in the Courts,” Cyril H. Wecht Institute of Forensic Science and Law’s program Digital Detectives: A Computer Forensics Update (January 2013)
  • Presenter, “Locked Down: How Security for Mobile Devices Helps Avoid Ethical Dilemmas,” ABA Webinar (May 2012)
  • Presenter, “Experts and Work Product,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s Environmental Law Forum (April 2011)