Reputation Protection (Mishcon Private)

Reputation Protection and Crisis Management

The UK left the EU on 31 January 2020. A transition period, during which EU laws continue to apply in the UK, is due to end on 31 December 2020. The UK/EU Withdrawal Agreement sets out transitional arrangements and negotiations for the future UK/EU relationship are ongoing.

Never has it been truer that an honoured reputation can be ruined in moments. Shifting societal expectations and increased legal and regulatory obligations have made public scrutiny a reality, even for those who prefer to avoid the spotlight. In this digital era, almost anyone can achieve a global platform and audience, and the means to weaponise adverse content for their own agenda. Quick-fire opinions and misinformation are easy to spread – and difficult to contain.

We have been defending our clients' reputations for decades, both publicly and discreetly. We have wide expertise in tackling and preventing unwarranted attacks, including securing injunctions to prevent the misuse of private information and the spread of fake news, as well as challenging defamatory content and harassing behaviour, and defusing personal and corporate disputes.

We are uniquely positioned in the London market as reputation experts sitting within a full-service law firm, able to collaborate quickly with our expert colleagues in tax, fraud, family dispute, investigations and white collar crime, and Cyber investigations, amongst other disciplines.

We are fast to respond, but we are also keen to pre-empt challenges before they arise, and to ensure our clients' reputations are resilient to attack. We know that the best way to build and protect reputation is to be proactive, to anticipate future challenges and plan for them intelligently.

For clients in the eye of a storm, we are calm, decisive, pragmatic and robust. Our experienced team looks at issues from a number of angles – from targeting the source of misinformation and considering adversaries' motivations, to dealing with the press and engaging with key stakeholders.

Strategic solutions to complex issues often require the involvement of diverse skill sets. Whether you have an existing team of advisors, or you need additional support, we pride ourselves on our convening power and on our ability to work well within a team. Our diverse network of esteemed international specialists include experts in: public relations, crisis communications and public affairs; investigators and security specialists; business change and strategy consultants; experts in safeguarding, child protection and online sexual exploitation; and social media engagement and listening providers.

Challenging issues can become crisis situations quickly, and preparedness is key to a decisive and confident response. Our experience in dealing with crisis situations helps us to spot others early, and to advise on ways to avoid or mitigate their impact.

We encourage all potentially exposed businesses and individuals to carefully and honestly prepare for reputational challenges, and to think broadly and creatively when crisis planning. As well as policy audits, internal investigations and mock dawn raids, through Spotlight, we can create immersive simulations (in person or entirely remotely) which allows businesses to practise handling a social media crisis, and to test their response and strategic communication under pressure.

Whatever is keeping you awake at night, facing the problem and being prepared will be key to mitigating potential reputational damage in the months and years ahead.  

Key Services

We advise and litigate on all aspects of media and communication law, for both claimants and defendants, including defamation, malicious falsehood, privacy, blackmail, harassment, reporting restrictions, and data protection breaches and compliance.

Some of the specific issues we assist with include:

  • Press/pre-publication enquiries about personal/corporate affairs, including from NGOs/regulators/other public bodies
  • Online/social media attacks
  • Blackmail and/or threats to release private/confidential information or threats to publish damaging allegations
  • Obtaining, defending and discharging emergency injunctions 
  • Challenging the publication of damaging or private material, both in the media and in a more limited, private or commercial context 
  • Inaccurate KYC/compliance database profiles
  • Content clearance and advice to publishers 
  • Reputation audits and strategy 
  • Media law training/awareness for journalists and communications professionals

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