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Preparing for a cyberattack
Blog //07-02-2024

Preparing for a cyberattack

The threat of cybercrime is a constant danger for businesses of all types, but law firms are particularly vulnerable due to the sensitive information they handle. In recent years, there have been multiple high-profile cyberattacks on law firms, which have resulted in data breaches, loss of client trust, and financial consequences. It is understandable then that 34% of legal professionals in our recent Legal Trends Report say data protection is their top daily challenge, it has become critical for law firms to take preventative measures to protect their systems and data from cyberattacks.

Developing a cybersecurity plan

Law firms must have a cybersecurity plan in place, which outlines how they will operate in the event of a cyberattack and how they will mitigate against potential cyber security risks to the firm. This plan should be developed in consultation with professionals in IT and tailored to the firm’s specific needs.

With almost 1 in 10 legal professionals surveyed in our Legal Trends Report believing their systems are not secure, having a plan in place that covers possible cyber-attack scenarios is a must. It should include what actions to take to minimise damage to clients and firm if an attack happens, and protocols to follow post-event.

Implementing training

One often overlooked aspect of cybersecurity preparation is employee training. All firm employees need to be aware of common cyber threats and how to avoid them. Training should be conducted regularly and should involve learning how to identify fraudulent email scams, phishing attempts, and what constitutes a strong password. Employees should be trained on the consequences of failing to follow cybersecurity protocols and why it is such a risk.

The backup and recovery plan

It’s crucial to have a backup and recovery plan in place to recover any data loss or damage caused by a cyberattack. Backups should be performed regularly at multiple locations to protect against data loss from a single location. The firm should have a recovery plan in place that outlines how the critical systems and data can be restored in the event of an attack, this should be tested regularly at pre-defined intervals.

The right software

To prevent cyberattacks, firms must have appropriate, regularly updated security software. This includes firewalls, antivirus and anti-spam filters software which can detect and block malicious software and hacking attempts. Regularly update and patch the software your firm uses.

Additionally, firms must look to their software providers for support. Using trusted providers for tools such as practice and case management, time recording, and document managment means your firm will have additional protection. Understand who holds your data and what measures are in place to ensure its security. A not insignificant 13% of legal professionals we surveyed say their digital systems are not secure, is it time to double up on security and rest easy with trusted providers?

With cybercrime is on the rise, law firms must proactively prepare by implementing the right combination of tools, protocols, and training. Cybercriminals are always looking for the next opportunity to exploit the security weaknesses of organisations, and law firms must be ready to thwart their attempts. Therefore, it’s in the best interests of law firms to collaborate with professional IT experts and build a comprehensive cybersecurity plan that covers potential attack scenarios and fits the firm's specific requirements. By putting preventative measures in place, firms can reduce the risks of cyberattacks, and protect themselves and their clients from detrimental consequences.


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