Keep Your Law Firm Protected from Cybercrime
Law firms face considerable threats from cyberattacks that can cause massive damage. In addition to the financial impacts of data breaches, law firms can face lawsuits, compliance issues, and criminal charges for failing to protect their clients’ most sensitive information.
The threats are genuine. From 2009-2019, large companies, including Equifax, Yahoo!, Marriott, LinkedIn, and Sony, were victims of data breaches that exposed billions of records to criminals. Data can be sold in bulk on the black market or used to create fake credit and bank cards.
However, large corporations are not the only ones susceptible to a cyberattack. In fact, according to one study, 43 percent of cyberattacks target small businesses. Law firms are no exceptions. According to the American Bar Association, 26 percent of firms experienced a security breach. Among those respondents, 37 percent experienced repair expenses, and 36 percent had downtime or the loss of billable hours.
What Can Law Firms Do to Protect Themselves?
The risks are rampant for law firms. Phishing emails that purport to be from official sources can lead to malware attacks that lead to data theft or ransomware attacks.
The most significant cybersecurity threat to your law firm … is you. Employees that inadvertently click on malicious emails have their social media accounts hacked or lose laptops and smartphones are the most common source of data breaches,
It’s why your law firm needs to invest in on-demand, interactive training that identifies the common threats and how to detect fraudulent emails and texts.
Here are six other tips for protecting your law firm’s most sensitive data.
1. Follow the Center for Internet Security Controls. The center has 20 recommendations for businesses to follow, including:
- Complete an inventory of authorized and unauthorized devices and software in your business network
- Ensure security configurations are set on hardware, software, and network devices
- Regularly conduct vulnerability assessments and remediate issues
- Restrict administrative privileges
- Collect and asses audit logs
- Protect email and web browsers with malware defenses
- Limit and control access and use of network ports, services, and protocols
- Create data recovery and incident response plan
- Monitor network boundaries
- Assess IT security skills and train to fill gaps
2. Scan for PII. Scrub your networks and systems for personally identifiable information (PII), such as names, ID numbers such as Social Security or license numbers, mailing addresses, credit card information, and medical records.
3. Use Next-Generation Endpoint Protection. Using artificial intelligence and machine learning tools, protect users and your systems. These solutions protect against zero-day attacks by preventing malware from infiltrating your system, detecting suspicious behavior, eradicating threats, assessing the impact of attacks and affected devices, and securing data.
4. Scan for Vulnerabilities. An external assessment of your computers, systems, networks, and applications identifies potential weaknesses and can inform how to design solutions to protect valuable assets.
5. Protect Your Bank Account. FDIC policies do not protect your law firm from bank fraud. Protect your ban account with these three steps:
- Sign up for email alerts for whenever money is withdrawn. Speed matters when it comes to fraudulent activity. If it’s discovered in the first 24 hours, it likely can be stopped
- Insist on your signature and two-factor authentication for wire transfers
- Stop using debit cards for your business bank account
6. Conduct a Threat Assessment. Understand what the threats are by knowing the answers to the following:
- Where is my unprotected data and who has access to it?
- How can attackers get to the data?
- What is it going to cost when a data breach occurs?
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. I have been very happy with how responsive BoomTech is to resolving problems that we may have and with how independently they solve them. Their monitoring and preventive efforts have kept our network up and running,” notes attorney Jeffrey L. Greenberg of Greenberg & Strelitz, P.A.
Learn how BoomTech can keep your law firm data protected by contacting us today.
Hear from Philipp Baumann, owner and founder of BoomTech: