April 05, 2018
Research shows that law firms are definitely under attack by information thieves.
In a 2017 LogicForce cyber security report, two-thirds of law firms had experienced a data breach, and every firm reported they’d been targeted by hackers.
While a data breach can harm a firm’s reputation and client relationships, there are significant financial risks too such as fines and lost revenue.
Law firms handle a lot of valuable confidential information. Data such as client depositions, discovery documents, plaintiff statements, and corporate information are valuable to thieves. Reduce this risk: Protect information from creation to disposal with a comprehensive document management policy.
There’s a common belief that hacks and leaks only happen to big law firms... and that often means that firms are not taking enough precautions. The LogicForce study showed that only 41% of law firms have formally documented cyber security policies and incident response plans. Reduce this risk: Have an Information Security Policy, and use all the latest and best IT safeguards.
Some law firms still have to make changes to their systems so that they are compliant with new GPPR regulations, which go into effect in May. Reduce this risk: Appoint someone to head up an action plan for GDPR.
It’s not uncommon for attorneys to change firms or leave firms to start their own. But confidential information often leaves with them. Also, angry or dissatisfied employees at a firm may steal data as pay-back. Reduce this risk: Implement a culture of security, and teach employees how to spot an Insider Fraudster.
Many lawyers work outside of the office but don’t always adhere to secure practices (for example, using public Wi-Fi, a common target for hackers). Reduce this risk: Teach security best practices to everyone in the firm. Encrypt all mobile devices.
According to the 2017 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report, 59% of all emails to law firms are phishing emails designed to trick the end user to log into a fraudulent system or download malicious malware. Reduce this risk: Teach all employees how to spot and avoid scams.
Nearly 63% of breaches are linked to third parties – and 80% of law firms are not vetting their third-party service provider’s data security practices, according to LogicForce. Reduce this risk: Vet third parties for their information security practices.
Over half (54%) of small and medium-sized businesses in North America and the U.K. blamed careless employees for cyber security incidents, according to the 2017 State of SMB Cybersecurity report. Reduce this risk: Embed security procedures in the workplace. For example, partner with a document destruction company.
Law firms typically have the resources to pay a ransom – and may be targeted with ransomware more as a result. Reduce this risk: Create a breach response policy and back up hard drives every day.
To learn more about how Shred-it can protect your documents and hard drives, please contact us to get a free quote and security risk assessment. To learn more about how to protect your firm, visit: shredit.com/law