New York Privacy, Data and Cybersecurity partner Trisha Sircar was profiled in The Glass Hammer about her career in data privacy and cybersecurity and navigating remote work environments during the COVID-19 pandemic.
"I will say I'm incredibly lucky that I've had the support of many women in my industry," Trisha said.
Trisha began her legal career in litigation at a law firm before moving to a global insurance company as in-house counsel. From there, she worked in employment law and eventually transitioned to working in data privacy and cybersecurity for Fortune 500 clients. Trisha helped implement the company's global privacy compliance and records and information management program. She also managed internal policies and procedures related to privacy, data and cybersecurity across more than 50 locations globally.
Throughout her career, she maintained close ties with Katten attorneys and joined Katten in January.
"I knew their business model, their reputation, and I knew that I could trust them as a partner based on the multiple matters that we handled together," Trisha said of Katten. "I always tell my mentees and associates that you should keep an open mind and be open to opportunities."
At Katten, Trisha is working with a variety of clients across different sectors, including but not limited to, financial services, retail and technology. However, she has currently been focusing a lot of her time on education privacy, including creating safe and secure practices in a remote and hybrid education environment and how to navigate re-entry into the classroom. As an aunt and attorney, ensuring software, applications and technology platforms are secure and protect students' privacy in school is important to Trisha.
"Whatever we can do to promote safe and secure practices for schools during this environment, whether they are participating remotely or in a hybrid model, is really important," Trisha said.
Trisha has also helped clients update their business continuity plans for unforeseeable circumstances like natural disasters or a pandemic and their ways of overseeing privacy policies and processes, as well as compliance with global privacy and cybersecurity laws.
Trisha described how her background and gender have never been barriers to her career and that she has worked with many women over the years and had female managers. Additionally, Trisha said Katten provides a supportive atmosphere and wonderful work/life balance. She also finds her pro bono work with entrepreneurs from socioeconomically disadvantaged communities to be important in creating more diversity in law.
Her advice for associates is to do the research on a company before interviewing, ask difficult questions and pay attention, while for senior level employees, she suggests networking with peers to share ideas on leadership and culture at a firm.
Trisha has valued the support she has received throughout her career and advises other attorneys to not be afraid to ask for help. She also said it is important to learn from different types of people and get different perspectives.
"Reaching out for help or advice does not subvert you from your task of getting to what you want to do, and it could have gotten me there faster," Trisha said. "Be open to others' opinions. Don't be afraid to ask uncomfortable questions, but also be prepared for the tough answers."
Furthermore, Trisha is proud of the field of law in which she works and which has an impact on everyone in a digital, global economy.
"Working in an industry that really affects everybody and holding all parties accountable to that, that's another thing I'm proud of. I get to do a job every day that helps society by promoting and ensuring an ethical approach to the usage of data, individual privacy and sound cybersecurity hygiene," Trisha said.