Crisis Management is a specialty area of PR. Some of it happens unexpectedly and some of it … well, the products and services provided by some companies means crisis management may be needed at any moment and many moments too.
Levick Communications seems to have its fair share of such clients, most recently representing Ashley Madison, the hookup site for married people. It was hacked and the hack became public knowledge this last week, meaning it would only be a matter of time before the members on this private site might be made public as well. The parent company, Avid Life Media, of Ashley Madison brought in Levick to do media outreach.
Other ways the website has battled the hack is by using copyright laws to strip information from company servers that initially leaked private information. That solution is questionable from a legal standpoint, but the action showed they meant business. Some may think this particular site being violated is Karma biting them on the backside.
We need to remember private information being made public is not just outing the cheaters, it’s potentially fraud and identity issues, as well as more malicious ones like stalking or home invasions.
But this is not the first time Levick Communications has worked such a rodeo. They publicly proclaim they are there to help clients establish and protect trust. Some other clients they have helped includes the Catholic Church during sexual abuse scandals, Guantanamo, the Florida Presidential election recounting of votes, Napster, and the tobacco industry.
Considering all the hacking incidents lately, a PR firm such as Levick could probably focus entirely on that area of specialization and remain very successful. One thing we are all learning this year … if we hadn’t before … if it is online, it may not remain a secret for long.
Other less controversial clients of Levick include AIG, GE Healthcare, Energizer, Arby’s, Lorillard Tobacco Co., Petfood Institute, and Smithfield Foods.