Partner Charles-Albert Helleputte has joined Squire Patton Boggs with his team and will serve as the firm’s EU head of its Data Privacy, Cybersecurity and Digital Assets Practice Group.
Based in Brussels and Paris, Mr. Helleputte joins from Steptoe & Johnson LLP where he was head of the EU cybersecurity, data, and privacy practice. He is accompanied by counsel Diletta De Cicco, who is based in both Brussels and Milan, and two associates working in Brussels and London. The team’s arrival follows several other hires into the firm’s privacy practice over the past year in Dallas, Leeds, London, Madrid, Miami, New York, Ohio, and Washington DC.
“Shifting regulatory conditions, increased M&A work across our European practice and a multitude of other factors continue to drive demand from clients for global data, privacy and cybersecurity counsel,” said Alan Friel, chair of the firm’s global Data Privacy, Cybersecurity & Digital Assets Practice. “Charles is one of the leading cybersecurity and data privacy experts in Europe, is respected by clients and peers and brings strong relationships with the EU institutions and agencies. He is ideally placed to lead our EU practice and to work with our UK practice group head, David Naylor, to further develop our EMEA data offering.”
Bart Vanderstraete, office managing partner of the Brussels’ office commented, “Charles brings with him a stellar team. Our new associates are all highly experienced, and in our new counsel, Diletta, we also have a talented Italian qualified lawyer who will be able to provide data privacy and cybersecurity advice direct to clients in our busy Milan office. We are continuing to invest in our practice, ensuring our clients have the best available expertise to meet increasingly complex data requirements and cyber risks around the globe.”
“This is a unique opportunity to join a firm with a market-leading reputation, international presence and clear strategy for building an elite practice,” said Mr. Helleputte. “Squire Patton Boggs has a very special platform in Europe with an established Brussels office and specialists in London, Madrid, Paris, Berlin, Prague and Warsaw. I look forward to working with Alan, David and my new colleagues across the global team.”
Mr. Helleputte advises clients on the full range of EU and national cybersecurity, data, and privacy laws including NIS Directive, GDPR and Cybersecurity Act, as well as developments such as NIS 2, DORA, the Artificial Intelligence Act and the ePrivacy Regulation. He has specific experience preparing and managing incidents in a cross-border context, where multiple cybersecurity, privacy, and other regulatory and enforcement frameworks apply. Working with clients in sectors such as financial services, fintech, technology, manufacturing and chemicals, Mr. Helleputte provides practical advice on compliance, accountability requirements, and certification mechanisms. He is also experienced in representing clients before national and EU supervisory authorities and courts, including the Working Party No. 29 (now the European Data Protection Board or EDPB, the independent EU body established by the GDPR to promote cooperation among data protection authorities throughout the European Economic Area and ensure the consistent application of data protection rules). He holds various leadership positions, such as its role on the IAPP EU Advisory Board. He speaks Dutch, English and French.
Ms. De Cicco advises clients across numerous sectors on cybersecurity and data privacy issues, in particular with compliance with EU and national cybersecurity, data, and privacy laws. She holds a Certified Information Privacy Professional/Europe certification, as well as a Data Protection Officer Certificate from Maastricht University. She is a member of the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP), and currently chair of the Brussels KnowledgeNet Chapter. She also serves as a project lead at W@Privacy. This year Diletta was recognized as one of the 100 most powerful cyber women by the Wome4Cyber Foundation in its book “Hacking gender barriers, Europe top cyber women”. She speaks English, Italian and French.
“Charles and David Naylor, who recently joined us in the UK, are a perfect team to lead the pan-EMEA part of our global data practice, which has this year added five new lawyers in the UK and two in Spain in addition to this latest expansion,” said European managing partner Jonathan Jones. “Charles’ team helps us keep up with client demand and we expect to continue to grow what has become a go-to data practice.”