Brent J. Arnold Associé

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Bureau principal :  Toronto

Brent J. Arnold

Brent J. Arnold is a partner practising in Gowling WLG's advocacy department, specializing in commercial litigation, arbitration and cybersecurity. Brent heads the firm's Commercial Litigation Technology Sub-group. He also leads cybersecurity initiatives for the firm's Financial Services Regulatory Group, and is a member of its InsurTech Group and its Innovation Council. In 2019 he co-authored the Canada chapter of Chambers Global Practice Guide: Data Protection & Cybersecurity, 2nd ed.

Brent's experience includes cyber breach coaching, cyber risk, consumer, implementation and other disputes for e-commerce vendors and software developers, construction, administrative and insolvency law, shareholders' rights, class actions, employment contracts, and general contractual disputes.

He has appeared before all levels of court in Ontario, including the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court of Canada, and has appeared before numerous administrative tribunals. In 2011, Brent appeared before the Supreme Court of Canada in support of the federal government's constitutional reference regarding a Canadian Securities Act.

Brent currently serves on the Steering Committee for the Cybersecurity and Data Privacy section of the U.S.-based Defence Research Institute (DRI). Brent served two terms on the Executive for the Civil Litigation Section of the Ontario Bar Association. He has chaired committees of The Advocates' Society and is editor for its Advocacy Matters publication. He co-authored the Society's Paperless Trials Manual, is a frequent speaker on the topics of cybersecurity, courtroom innovation, and electronic trials, and writes a regular technology column for The Advocates' Society's Advocacy Matters publication. Brent is also a member of the Canadian Technology Law Association and the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP).

He has also worked as an adjunct faculty member at York University, where he taught advanced business law in the School of Administrative Studies.

Associations professionnelles

  • Canadian Bar Association
  • Canadian Political Science Association
  • Canadian Technology Law Association
  • Defense Research Institute (DRI)
  • International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP)
  • Osgoode Society
  • The Advocates' Society
  • Toronto Lawyers Association


  • "2019: The Year (So Far) in Canadian Cyber Security," Data and Security Dispatch, vol. 5(3), DRI (December 2019)
  • "IIROC Introduces Mandatory Cyber Breach Reporting," Gowling WLG Tech News, Nov. 13, 2019
  • "2019 Brings Guidance on Cyber in Canada," Gowling WLG Commercial Litigation Bulletin, Nov. 12, 2019
  • "Changes in Canadian Privacy Law May Impact U.S. Companies," Data and Security Dispatch, vol. 5(2), DRI (October 2019)
  • "Canada: Law and Practice," Chambers Global Practice Guide: Data Protection & Cybersecurity, 2nd ed., Chambers Global
  • "Privilege at the Border-Should Lawyers be Resorting to "Burner" Phones?," Advocacy Matters (The Advocates Society), May 2019
  • "Finding a co-ordinated approach to cyber-threats," Canadian Lawyer, April 30, 2019
  • "A Digital Hearing Workspace for the Commercial List," Advocacy Matters (The Advocates Society), March 2019
  • Brent J. Arnold, "2018: The Year (So Far) in Review in Canadian Cyber Security," Data and Security Dispatch, vol. 4(3), DRI (Dec. 27, 2018)
  • "Cyber security the focus of new OSFI advisory," Gowling WLG Tech News, Jan. 25, 2019
  • "He sees you when you're sleeping, he knows when you're awake: Smart toys and regulating the IoT in Canada," Gowling WLG Tech News, Dec 17, 2018
  • "5 Tips for Electronic Trials and Arbitrations," Advocacy Matters (The Advocates Society), Winter 2018
  • "New Senate report on cyber security should "keep you up at night," Gowling WLG Tech News, Nov. 5, 2018
  • "Law Podcasts Redux-Twitter Mailbag Edition," Advocacy Matters (The Advocates Society), November 2018
  • "Canada hits "refresh" on cyber in 2018 with the Canadian Centre for Cyber Security," Gowling WLG Tech News, Oct. 11, 2018
  • "Law Podcasts for Lawyers on the Go," Advocacy Matters (The Advocates Society), Fall 2018
  • "Cyber Security in Canada: Structure and Challenges," Governing Cyber Security in Canada, Australia and the United States: Special Report, SERENE-RISC and the Centre for International Governance Innovation, 2018
  • Worldwide: "Equustek again: BC Supreme Court upholds worldwide injunction despite US refusal to enforce," (2017-18), 19 I.E.C.L.C., July 2018
  • "Legal Tech for Litigators," Advocacy Matters (The Advocates Society), Summer 2018
  • Canada: "Equustek again: BC Supreme Court upholds worldwide injunction despite US refusal to enforce," Gowling WLG Tech News, May 2018
  • "E-filing is Here-Use it!," Advocacy Matters (The Advocates Society), May 2018
  • "Equustek Again: BC Supreme Court Upholds Injunction Despite US Refusal to Enforce," MLRC Media Law Letter, April 2018
  • "Yahoo! Cyber breach settlement gives shareholders cause for cheer," Gowling WLG Tech News, April 2018
  • "Apps for Lawyers" Advocacy Matters (The Advocates Society), Spring 2018
  • "Cybersecurity compliance burdens increase for Canadian investment dealers and advisers," Gowling WLG MarketCaps, October 2017
  • "Early cybersecurity derivative actions miss Target," (2015-16), 17 I.E.C.L.C., August 2016
  • "Early cybersecurity derivative actions miss Target," Gowlings Commercial Litigation Bulletin, July 2016
  • "Ransomware poses complex legal and reputational risks," Globe and Mail, April 2016
  • "McDonald's: U.S. 'joint employer' case sounds alarm for Canadian franchisors," Gowlings Franchise and Distribution, April 2016
  • "Ransomware threat to Canadian businesses broadens," Gowlings Commercial Litigation Bulletin, April 2016
  • "A big bite of the Apple: "Backdoor" orders, privacy and burdens on non-litigants," Gowlings Commercial Litigation Bulletin, February 2016
  • "Ontario court clarifies franchise issues in Trillium Motor v. General Motors," Gowlings Franchise and Distribution, July 2015
  • The Advocates' Society Electronic Trials Symposium: "The Advocates' Society Paperless Trials Manual: A Preview," June 2015
  • The Advocates' Society Paperless Trials Manual, released May 2015
  • "Ontario Court of Appeal narrows franchisor obligation to disclose litigation in Caffé Demetre case," Gowlings Franchise and Distribution, April 2015
  • "Québec Court of Appeal upholds liability, reduces damages in Dunkin' Brands Canada Ltd. v. Bertico Inc.," Gowlings Franchise and Distribution, April 2015
  • "Restrictions On Communication With Experts: Advocacy Groups Provide Guidance On Moore v. Getahun," Gowlings Commercial Litigation Bulletin, July 2014
  • "Courts Clean House with SCC's A.I. Enterprises v. Bram Enterprises," Toronto Law Journal, July 2014
  • "Achilles Motors - Temporary Dissolution is no Achilles' Heel," Gowlings Commercial Litigation Bulletin, April 2014
  • "The Pendulum Swings on Summary Judgment in Hryniak v. Mauldin," Toronto Law Journal, April 2014
  • "Hryniak v. Mauldin: Supreme Court Loosens Restrictions on Summary Judgment Imposed by Combined Air," Gowlings Commercial Litigation Bulletin, January 2014
  • "The ‘Communications Revolution' in Our Courts," Toronto Law Journal, January 2014
  • "Jury Still Out on Digital Court Recording," Keeping Tabs, October 2013
  • "A Supreme Limit? The Division of Powers and Securities Regulation," paper for The Commons Institute, Supreme Court & Constitutional Litigation, June 27-28, 2013
  • "Too Soon to Tell if Changes to IIROC Arbitrations Process will Increase Use by Investors," Gowlings Commercial Litigation Bulletin, December 2011
  • "Supreme Court Releases Decision on Proposed Securities Act - Details," Gowlings Commercial Litigation Bulletin, November 2011
  • "Legal Solutions to Ontario's Organ Shortage: Redrawing the Boundaries of Consent," (2006) 13 Health L.J. 139, January 2006
  • "Does the Charter Matter?" (2005) 11 Rev. Con. Stud. 37, January 2005

Selected Speaking Engagements

  • Panel, "Data protection in the EU: What Canadian Businesses need to know," Gowling WLG, Toronto, Oct. 8, 2019
  • Panel, "Cyber Security & Personal Data," World Legal Summit (Toronto), Toronto, Aug. 1, 2019
  • Panel, "International Data Protection," Association of Corporate Counsel Conference, Philadelphia, April 24, 2019
  • Panel, "Electronic Trials," Ontario Bar Association Anatomy of a Trial, Toronto, April 29, 2019
  • Panel, "International Data Protection," Association of Corporate Counsel In-House Counsel Conference, Philadelophia, April 24, 2019
  • Lecture, "Privacy: Protecting Yourself and Your Organization," Ontario HIV Network, March 4, 2019
  • Lecture, "Technology in the Multi-generational Workplace: New Technologies, Legal Risks, and Practical Strategies," Conference Board of Canada, Toronto, Jan. 31, 2019
  • Lecture (with Christopher Oates), "Significant Regulatory Developments," Janus Conferences Cybersecurity and Data Privacy, Toronto, Nov. 6, 2018
  • Lecture, "Your Privacy and the Law in Canada," Digital Privacy Expo, North York Central Library, Sept. 22, 2018
  • Panelist, "Cybersecurity: Defending Your Digital Business," Economic Club of Canada, Toronto, June 25, 2018
  • Lecture, "Preparing the Organization for a Data Breach and Aftermath," Conference Board of Canada / BlackBerry Secure World Tour, Ottawa, May 8, 2018
  • Lecture, "The Advocates' Society Paperless Trials Manual: Primer & Update," The Advocates' Society Electronic Trials and Arbitrations program, Toronto, April 9, 2018
  • Lecture / Panelist, "Cyber Security-Incident Response & Insurance," University of Toronto Law School, Toronto, March 14, 2018
  • Panelist, "Technology in the Courtroom," The Advocates' Society Courthouse of the Future Symposium, Toronto, Nov. 21, 2017
  • Panelist, "Cybersecurity: The Impenetrable Topic," Technology in Practice 2017, Toronto, Nov. 9, 2017
  • Lecture, "Digital Privacy: Protecting Yourself in the Digital Age," Toronto Public Library, Fairview Branch, Toronto, Oct. 17, 2017
  • Panelist, "Managing Risk: Cyber Security Preparedness and Breach Response," Scalar Security Roadshow, Vancouver-Calgary-Toronto, October 2016
  • Lecture, "Technology and Ontario's Courts," (presentation to a Chinese judicial delegation), Toronto, Sept. 29, 2017
  • Panelist, "Cyber Security," Gowling WLG Waterloo Oatmeal Seminar, Waterloo, May 17, 2017
  • Lecture, "Boilerplate," The Osgoode Certificate in Entertainment Law course, Toronto, Feb. 8, 2017
  • Lecture, "The Cyber Security Legal Landscape: An Update," Canadian Cyber Threat Exchange Symposium, Toronto, Dec. 7, 2016
  • Lecture, Lecture, "The Advocates' Society Paperless Trials Manual: Primer & Update," Sudbury and District Law Association Colloquium 2015, Sudbury, Oct. 22, 2015

Mandats représentatifs

Technology and Cyber

  • Breach coach for a waste disposal contractor struck by a ransomware attack.
  • Breach coach for a paving company struck by a ransomware attack.
  • Represented a device manufacturer in a data privacy class action.
  • Breach coach for a province-wide medical diagnostics company struck by a ransomware attack.
  • Breach coach for an online loan company subjected to a targeted phishing attack.
  • Advised a bank in a potential dispute with a customer defrauded in a phishing attack.
  • Counsel for a travel software developer in a software implementation dispute with a major travel company.
  • Represented a travel company sued for non-payment by a hosted email service provider.
  • Represented a manufacturer in a dispute with a licensee making illegal use of the manufacturer's confidential information.
  • Advised a software vendor on data privacy and contractual rights issues in a dispute with municipal transportation network.
  • Acted for a vendor of car dealer management software in an implementation dispute with a customer.
  • Advised an online managed services provider on regulatory and insolvency issues regarding a customer.
  • Represented online auction and classified ads companies in various consumer disputes, including complaints to the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal.
  • Advised on cyber security issues in due diligence for the financing of a digital currency company.
  • Acted as breach coach for an online lender compromised by a phishing attack.
  • Defended senior management for a software company against complex oppression claims in a commercial arbitration.
  • Successfully defended software company directors from an oppression action by a former investor.
  • Represented cleantech company in dispute with activist shareholders.
  • Represented an American celebrity in an action against a Canadian company illegally using the celebrity's likeness on drug paraphernalia.
  • Counsel for a home alarm company in a dispute with a competitor over allegedly stolen customer data.

General Commercial Litigation

  • Represented trustees for a charity in a real estate dispute with a foreign government.
  • Successfully defended clients implicated in a complex fraud action involving multiple defendants and jurisdictions.
  • Resolved a dispute between a commercial tenant and its landlord.

Financial Services and Insolvency

  • Represented a large trust company in a class action and related actions and applications involving alleged breaches of the Consumer Protection Act.
  • Counsel for the monitor in a complex insolvency proceeding establishing the right of monitors to act as plaintiff in oppression actions.
  • Defended a bank's advisory practice sued for negligence by an auto parts company.
  • Counsel for trustee in bankruptcy in complex recovery proceedings.

Administrative and Constitutional

  • Represented a provincial new home builder regulator in numerous complex administrative and civil proceedings.
  • Counsel to several municipalities in a constitutional dispute with a national railway.
  • Counsel to animal rights groups in a judicial review of provincial hunting legislation.
  • Appeared in the Supreme Court of Canada in support of the federal government's constitutional reference regarding a national securities regulator.
  • Represented a large online used car dealer in disciplinary proceedings involving alleged regulatory breaches.


  • Represented a region and several municipalities in jurisdictional dispute with a national railway in litigation linked to a federal environmental assessment proceeding.
  • Defended a heating equipment manufacturer from multiple actions involving oil leaks from residential heating equipment.
  • Obtained injunction preventing a landlord from destroying evidence of environmental contamination.
  • Represented landowner in a dispute with neighbouring polluters.