Mark Plotkin

Mark E. Plotkin

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Covington & Burling LLP
One CityCenter
850 Tenth Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001-4956
Tel: +1 202 662 5656



  • Harvard Law School, J.D., 1987
    • cum laude
    • Board of Student Advisers
    • Harvard Journal on Legislation, Policy Essays Editor
  • Yale University, B.A., 1983
    • summa cum laude
    • Phi Beta Kappa
    • Berkeley Fellowship

Bar Admissions

  • District of Columbia

Mark Plotkin focuses his practice on financial services, national security and data privacy.  He is the only attorney in the United States to be nationally-ranked by Chambers USA in all three fields and he frequently handles matters that combine these disciplines, including in cases before the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), anti-money laundering (AML), and Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) matters, USA PATRIOT Act, Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act and Dodd-Frank Act compliance issues, and other bank regulatory, defense and security matters.

He has advised many leading companies, including non-banking companies such as AAA, Facebook, Microsoft, and the NFL on financial services matters.  He also advises and represents many U.S. and foreign banking and financial services firms before the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (FRB), the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and other domestic and foreign regulatory agencies.  These matters include de novo bank charters, mergers and acquisitions, bank activities and structures, electronic banking, data privacy, security breaches, anti-money laundering and BSA compliance reviews, and compliance with other laws.  He is recognized for his expertise in electronic commerce and pioneering novel banking powers and services.  He is Co-Editor of Regulation of Foreign Banks and Affiliates in the United States (West Publishing, 2012), and Editor-in-Chief of E-Commerce Law and Business (Aspen Publishing, 2003).

In the national security arena, Mr. Plotkin represents clients before CFIUS in obtaining Exon-Florio approval for foreign investments in the United States and on foreign ownership, control, or influence (FOCI) reviews before the Defense Security Service (DSS) of the U.S. Department of Defense.  His experience includes negotiating several of the most significant, complex and sensitive national security agreements with the U.S. government in recent years.  Among other landmark CFIUS matters, Mr. Plotkin represented Lenovo in its $2.3 billion acquisition of IBM’s x86-based server business, Nexen Inc. in its $15.1 billion sale to CNOOC Ltd., China Investment Corporation in its $1.6 billion investment in AES Corporation, Deutsche Börse in its proposed $9.5 billion acquisition of the New York Stock Exchange, Stanley Inc. in its $1 billion acquisition by CGI Group, Temasek Holdings in its multi-billion dollar investment in Merrill Lynch, IBM in the company’s $1.75 billion sale of its personal computer division to Lenovo in 2005, and Global Crossing in its $250 million acquisition by Singapore Technologies Telemedia.  Mr. Plotkin chairs the Firm’s National Security and Defense Industry Group, is a frequent writer and lecturer on national security matters, and teaches a course on national security law at Georgetown University Law Center.

Representative Matters

  • AAA — financial services
  • AOL — national security
  • BAE Systems — national security
  • Broadridge — financial services
  • Brown Brothers Harriman — financial services
  • BT — national security
  • Carlyle Group — national security
  • China Investment Corporation — national security
  • Deutsche Börse — national security
  • Energy Future Holdings — national security
  • Expedia — financial services

Honors and Rankings

  • Law360, International Trade MVP
  • Washington DC Super Lawyers, Banking
  • Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business (multiple years)
  • Chambers Global (multiple years)
  • Best Lawyers in America (multiple years)
  • Super Lawyers (multiple years)
  • Legal 500 US (multiple years)
  • Washingtonian Magazine — Best Lawyers in Washington (multiple years)

Memberships and Affiliations

  • Co-Editor and Co-Author, Regulation of Foreign Banks and Affiliates in the United States (West Publishing, 2012)
  • Editor-in-Chief and Co-Author, E-Commerce Law and Business (Aspen Publishing, 2003)
  • National Eagle Scout Association
  • Yale University, Class Secretary
  • Harvard Law School, Reunion Chair
  • Adjunct Professor of Law, Georgetown University Law Center
  • Berkeley College Fellow
  • Sidwell Friends School Development Board (1998-2004)
  • Board of Governors, Association of Yale Alumni (2007-2010)
  • Harvard College, Teaching Fellow (1984-1986)

Publications and Speeches

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