Steptoe & Johnson LLP
Steptoe & Johnson LLP
Alan Cohn advises clients from a range of industries on cybersecurity, blockchain, and distributed ledger technology issues, and other national security and emerging technology issues. Mr. Cohn is co-chair of the firm’s Blockchain and Digital Currency practice. He serves as counsel to the Blockchain Alliance, a public-private forum established by a broad coalition of companies and organizations to help combat criminal activity on the blockchain, and advises companies and investors concerning a range of issues associated with the adoption and use of blockchain and distributed ledger technology. Mr. Cohn also coordinates the Coalition for Responsible Cybersecurity, which was formed by leading cybersecurity companies to prevent dual-use export control rules from harming defensive cybersecurity products, services, and technologies.
Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Cohn served in senior policy positions at the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) for almost a decade, most recently as the assistant secretary for strategy, planning, analysis & risk and second-in-charge overall of the DHS Office of Policy. While at DHS, Mr. Cohn established the cyber policy office within the DHS Office of Policy, and helped shape department policy on issues such as cybersecurity information sharing, cybercrime and cyber-related sanctions, and cyber incident management. He also represented DHS on the Committee on Foreign Investments in the United States (CFIUS) and related national security review processes for foreign investments, acquisitions, and US license applications. Mr. Cohn also designed and led the first two Quadrennial Homeland Security Reviews—comprehensive year-long reviews of homeland security—and helped implement DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson’s Unity of Effort Initiative, a major corporate-level DHS governance, integration, and management reform effort.
Prior to government service, Mr. Cohn represented major corporations in federal and state court litigation, labor negotiations, and compliance matters involving federal agencies, including the US Department of Labor.
Stewart Baker (Steptoe & Johnson), Alan Cohn (Steptoe & Johnson), and Matthew R. A. Heiman (Johnson Controls) discuss the Wassenaar Arrangement, which governs international export controls for “intrusion software,” and its regulatory effects.Listen to this podcast