April 29, 2019

A Maryland federal court on Monday tapped attorneys from plaintiffs firms Hausfeld, Cohen Milstein and DiCello Levitt to represent consumers in multidistrict litigation stemming from hotel giant Marriott's recent admission that it suffered a massive data breach.

U.S. District Court Judge Paul Grimm appointed Andrew Friedman of Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC, Amy Keller of DiCello Levitt Gutzler LLC, and James Pizzirusso of Hausfeld LLP as co-counsel in the consolidated class action consumer suits, according to court records. Marriott, which first announced the breach in November 2018, says that attackers who breached its Starwood Hotels unit's guest reservation system stole personal data from up to 383 million guests — including more than 5 million unencrypted passport numbers.

Each of the lead attorneys has experience representing consumers in other headline-grabbing data breaches. Friedman helped earn final approval of a $115 million settlement that ended litigation over health care giant Anthem Inc.'s 2015 data breach. Keller is co-lead counsel in sprawling consumer multidistrict litigation pending in Georgia over Equifax's massive 2017 data breach, and Pizzirusso has represented financial institutions that settled with Home Depot and K-Mart after data breaches.

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Friedman called it a "tremendous honor" to be appointed co-lead counsel and said the team will "try to do anything in our power to gain compensation for the Marriott class members and make sure this kind of thing doesn't happen again in the future." Pizzirusso said he looked forward to working to "find justice as soon as possible for our clients impacted by this massive data breach," and to "working cooperatively" with Marriott's counsel, a team from BakerHostetler, "to move this case forward in a productive manner."

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