Cybersecurity is crucial for any company. But it’s even more critical when working with sensitive data as attorneys and business professionals do.
However, cybersecurity can be complicated for many in the legal industry. That’s why cybersecurity best practices are so important for law firms to understand and implement.
To help you do just that, here is a helpful guide on cybersecurity for law firms. Read on to discover six practices that will keep your data safe.
1. Cyber Threat Identification
The first practice is to identify threats for law firms. You need to know what you’re up against before you can implement cybersecurity efforts.
There are many ways for this step to take place, but it typically starts with an executive and board-level commitment to cybersecurity. Then you engage the right people: legal IT services.
Once these resources are brought on board, they should conduct a thorough review of all systems used within your organization. This includes email systems, on-premises devices through to cloud services.
They’ll then identify vulnerabilities and decide what to address. The result is a prioritized action plan for narrowing down cybersecurity risks.
This phase can be overwhelming at times, but it pays off in the long run by giving you an accurate picture of how safe or unsafe your data is right now. It helps attorneys understand what changes need to happen if they want their information more secure moving forward too.
Law firms are expected to protect the data of their clients. This includes keeping this information secure, especially when it’s shared with outside parties.
So, ensure that your emails and files are encrypted while sharing. This prevents cyber threats from accessing sensitive information during these transitory periods.
The same principle applies to cloud-based services. You can use them in conjunction with encryption software for added security benefits.
Encryption technology also plays a role in mobility policies. This is because employees may access client records through mobile devices. Encrypting data on smartphones helps keep business data safe while on the go.
Additionally, keep track of encryption keys so that only authorized parties can access them when needed. Data breaches increase tenfold without proper key management policies.
3. Multi-Factor Authentication
Multi-factor authentication means using multiple verification methods to access systems, devices, or accounts.
For example, you might use a password and an additional PIN before logging onto your computer. Or, if using a mobile device from outside the network, they may require two forms of ID. Something only you have (like a code sent through text message) plus something that’s always on hand, like biometrics.
MFA requires hackers to have many pieces of data when trying to gain entry into company systems or files. This makes it extremely difficult for them to get around this cybersecurity measure.
This security protocol can also help improve compliance efforts. Clients will know their information is secure when they work with your law firm.
4. Employee Education
You can’t implement cybersecurity best practices for law firms without including employees. This is why you need to educate staff members about cybersecurity risks too.
By conducting regular training, they’ll understand how to avoid cyber threats. And they will know what cybersecurity protocols are in place within the company.
This also applies when new devices enter the office environment. Whether that’s an email system upgrade or cloud server implementation for added storage space — it goes back to educating staff.
The more informed team members are, the fewer cybersecurity issues you’ll have.
5. Cybersecurity Insurance
Don’t forget about cybersecurity insurance when coming up with your strategy.
Even if you manage to implement every one of these measures, there’s no guarantee that a cyber attack won’t happen anyway. This is why it pays to have cybersecurity insurance for law firms.
Cyber attacks can be financially crippling without proper protection in place. A security breach may result in massive expenses related to fines and lost revenue from lost clients
Legal liability coverage also helps protect against lawsuits.
Cybersecurity insurance for law firms is available in many different forms. You can purchase cybersecurity insurance for your devices, servers, cloud services, or accounts.
And even if you don’t think you need it now, you should discuss cybersecurity insurance as part of the business plan moving forward. And that’s because data breaches are only going to become more common over time.
6. Network Segmentation Strategy
Network segmentation divides the entire network into smaller parts. This practice helps prevent cyber attacks by keeping important data away from unsecured areas of your system.
For example, you might create separate networks for different clients. Separate those with sensitive information and those who just need basic access.
Separating these two groups makes it harder for hackers to steal data if they breach one section of the larger network. They’ll only have limited access to that sub-network instead of complete control over everything online.
This is also one of the cybersecurity requirements for law firms for compliance purposes. All it takes is one unsecured device for a cybersecurity breach to occur. And by limiting access, you prevent this from happening while also reducing IT costs.
You can use network segmentation strategies with other cybersecurity. For example with like 2FA or an incident response plan. When implemented together, your law firm will have all bases covered when it comes to stopping threats.
Enhancing Cybersecurity for Law Firms With the Best Practices
Cybersecurity for law firms is a great way to protect your business from data breaches. Implementing these measures will need some effort on the part of employees and partners. But it’s well worth it in the end
You can implement each one of these cybersecurity protocols individually or as a group depending upon what you feel is necessary to keep your firm secure at all times.
We hope you’ve found this guide helpful in keeping your law firm secure. For more informative posts, please keep checking our blog.