Cybercrime Against Law Firms: What You Need to Know
Cybercrime Against Law Firms: What You Need to Know
Sunday, February 26, 2023
Cyberattacks on law firms can havedevastating consequences, from data breaches to reputational damage. To stay safeand secure, it is essential for law firms to remain aware of the latestcybercrime trends and take steps to protect their networks and data. According tothe 2022 publication of the American Bar Association, cybersecurity is theleading topic of concern for law firms today. Even if you are a law firm withan internal or external IT department, this article should offer someperspectives from a highly respected cybersecurity company-Cloudskope:
The TOP Trends in Cybercrimetargeting the legal industry:
Cyberattacks are up 150% since December 2022
Fifty-four percent of firms under fifty employees were targeted by a malicious attack in 2022.
Seventeen percent of these firms were victimized and paid over 1m in ransom to retrieve data from a ransomware attack
Ninety-two percent of all the surveyed firms surveyed had an internal IT department, and when asked: " Had IT overseen and covered."
Dark Web data leaks accounted for forty-two lawsuits from clients whose data was compromised via a breach of their privileged information at the law firm.
Every one of the Managing partners polled thought they had " a firewall" to protect their data.
A cyberattack targets a law firm every 4 minutes in North America.
The sophistication of attacks is so high that internal staff cannot respond fast enough to prevent an attack.
Dwell time, on average, was 30 days before a malicious attack was executed. ( Dwell time is the amount of time a hacker accessed your system passively. Before launching a ransomware attack)
Nine out of ten law firms will be targeted in 2023.
Here are some things to consider whenprotecting your practice:
Understand Online Risk and Security Vulnerabilities:
To protect their firm, lawyers must becomefamiliar with the possible security threats they may face online—this includesunderstanding common cybercrimes such as phishing, malware, ransomware, andDDoS attacks. Knowing these signs can help lawyers identify any suspiciousactivity before it becomes a significant problem. Additionally, law firmsshould be aware of internal vulnerabilities such as weak passwords or dataleakage from unsecured devices. Taking proactive measures to reduce risk andimprove cybersecurity is essential for protecting against cybercrime.
Do not forget about your stolen and compromiseddata on the Dark Web:
Cyber breaches at leading SaaS providerslike LinkedIn, Adobe, Microsoft, LastPass, Facebook, and others have exposedpasswords and privileged credentials globally. This means your administrativecredentials to most services sit in plaintext on the dark web and are readilyavailable to malicious actors. Our defensive cybersecurity strategy mustinclude providing your exposed data on the dark web, or you are leaving theback door open. Sometimes, we have found confidential data from clients, SS#'s,PHI, addresses, driver's license numbers, and personal attorney-clientprivileged emails in plaintext on the dark web forums.
Follow Best Practices to SurviveCyber Attack:
It is essential for law firms to adoptbest practices when it comes to protecting their data. This means applyingstrict cybersecurity protocols covering all technology layers and implementingappropriate measures to prevent attacks, including data backups, antivirussoftware, two-factor authentication, and the use of secure passwords. Additionally,data security policies should be in place so all users know how to respond ifan attack occurs. By following these best practices, law firms can reduce therisk of being targeted by cybercriminals.
Implement Strong DefensesAgainstMalware and Ransomware:
To protect against malware and ransomwareattacks, law firms must be aware of the latest trends and have strong defenses.This includes application authorization, which only allows known and trustedapplications to run, and training employees on recognizing suspicious emailsthat may contain links or attachments that could have malicious code.Furthermore, law firms should frequently back up their files to restore lostdata if an attack succeeds.
Educate Your Team About KeepingDataSafe.
Cybersecurity should be top of mind forall members of the legal team. It is essential to regularly educate staff memberson best practices, including identifying suspicious emails and never clickingon links or attachments from unknown sources. Additionally, ensure staff isaware of the data they have access to and the proper procedures they need tofollow when accessing that data. This includes encrypting sensitive data andusing strong passwords to guard against unauthorized access.
Monitor and Respond to Breaches withpromptness and Precision.
As detected intrusions become more frequent,and firms must improve their response speed and accuracy. This includesprompting professionals to be on call any time, day or night, should an incidentoccur. Incidents should also be investigated and traced back to the source sothat legal teams can better identify future threats before they become issues.Additionally, cybersecurity policies must be updated to stay ahead of evolvingcyber threats.
CloudSkope employs a team of strategicleaders, security experts, and cloud experts who are ready and willing to helpyour organization audit its data practices and start your journey toward properdigital protection for the modern age.
We have years of experience indigital strategy, offering our guidance and advisory services to get you tostop thinking about data security and start doing it.
Contact us today to learn more aboutour Cyber Risk Services for your business.