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Nicola Cain

Work 020 3060 6171

Work Department

Media, Data


Nicola is a Partner specialising in media and information rights law, advising on compliance, regulation and disputes.

Her experience encompasses defamation, malicious falsehood, privacy and breach of confidence, contempt, reporting restrictions, freedom of information and other information access rights, media regulation, public law and the protection of journalistic information. In addition, Nicola has data protection expertise, advising clients on data protection compliance and disputes, including subject access requests, objections to processing and other data subject rights, the impact of GDPR, cyber-incidents and data breaches, including in the context of RPC's award-winning ReSecure integrated data breach response service, and regulatory enforcement and litigation in their aftermath. Nicola is noted for her specialism in the application of data protection laws to media and technology companies.

Her clients primarily include major broadcasters, news media organisations, social media and technology platforms and insurers.


Trained 5RB (Chambers of Desmond Browne QC & Matthew Nicklin QC), qualified 2008; BBC, 2008 – 2017, latterly as Head of Legal – Freedom of Information and Contentious Data Protection; joined RPC in 2017. 

Notable publications: Defamation: Law, Procedure & Practice (2009), co-author; Human Rights Practice (2002 – 2015), Assistant Editor; Media Law and Practice (forthcoming), contributing author.


Member of the inaugural Media and Communications List User Committee.


Arnold School, Blackpool; Brunel University, LLB (Hons) (2004); University College London, LLM (2007); College of Law, London, BVC (2005); International Association of Privacy Professionals CIPP/E (2017).

London: Risk advisory

Data protection privacy and cybersecurity

Within: Data protection privacy and cybersecurity

The data and privacy practice at RPC is jointly headed up by  Oliver Bray and Keith Mathieson who focus on non-contentious and contentious issues respectively. A 'very experienced and capable litigator', Mathieson is defending Associated Newspapers in several data protection disputes, and acted alongside recently promoted partner Nicola Cain for Media Lawyers Association to draft responses to the government's 'call for views' on derogations to the GDPR. In another significant work highlight, the group is instructed by Facebook to advise of several issues including the impact of the GDPR and ePrivacy Regulation. Jon Bartley joined the group from Penningtons Manches LLP and is considered 'extremely strong in the field', with expertise in digital technology and e-commerce, data protection and cyber security.

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Reputation management

Within: Reputation management

RPC  is a defendant firm that ‘offers a level of advice and litigation experience that’s hard to beat’. Clients include The Daily Mail, The Sun, The BBC and Financial Times. ‘Hugely experienced’ partner Nicola Cain  advises several high-profile publications on defamation and privacy issues. Keith Mathieson  is praised for being ‘a highly respected partner who has a complete command of the legal issues’. He was the lead partner acting for News Group Newspapers in a privacy and breach of confidence claim brought by the Duchess of York. He also defends MGN Limited in civil claims relating to voicemail interceptions and Associated Newspapers Limited against data protection, libel and privacy claims. Other names to note include Rupert Cowper-Coles,  Philip Tansley  and Oliver Murphy

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London: TMT (technology, media and telecoms)

Brand management

Within: Brand management

RPC has expanded its brand management practice with the recruitment of Paul Joukador, who specialises in commercial and technology matters from Hogan Lovells International LLP, and Jon Bartley from Penningtons Manches LLP. The team headed by advertising expert Oliver Bray advises clients such as Google, Coca-Cola and Dolce & Gabbana on branding and marketing, traditional and new media publishing, contentious and non-contentious IP matters, digital media and data protection. Bray, Victoria Noto and Stuart Harris have recently assisted Facebook on several global advertising and marketing initiatives including collaborations with agencies to develop social media focused advertising, in addition to advising News UK and Ireland on running of promotions across the Sun and The Times publications. Ciara Cullen has advised the Pernod Ricard group on G. H. Mumm’s sponsorship arrangements with Usain Bolt. The ‘highly recommendedJeremy Drew continues to assist Sports Direct in advertising, copy clearance and regulatory matters. Nicola Cain assists publishing and media sector clients on regulatory and data-related aspects of marketing.

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Media and entertainment (including media finance)

Within: Media and entertainment (including media finance)

The ‘extremely knowledgeable’ department at RPC stands out for its ‘first-rate’ publishing expertise, handling contentious and non-contentious matters. Keith Mathieson has ‘many years of experience and provides pragmatic solutions’, and leads the media defence team, which counts The Telegraph, Associated News Group, The Financial Times, Hachette UK Group, News UK & Ireland and News Group Newspapers as clients. The department is also experienced across advertising, marketing, gaming, social media and interactive content. Oliver Bray advises Google on numerous TV, online and in-store point of sale advertising and marketing campaigns for various new Google product launches; he also provides YouTube with clearance advice in relation to videos and materials created for YouTube advertising campaigns, and advised Dolce & Gabbana in its response to the Irish Advertising Standards Authority, which had flagged two consumer complaints in relation to a television advertisement. Paul Joseph acts for high-profile media and gaming clients on contentious and non-contentious IP matters.  ‘Practical and approachable’ legal director Nicola Cain handles contentious and non-contentious issues involving media regulation, freedom of expression, content, intermediary liability issues and the data-related aspects of marketing. Senior associates Kim Waite and Rupert Cowper-Coles are also recommended. Jon Bartley joined in 2017 from Penningtons Manches LLP.

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