Here Are A Few Ways Keep Your Law Firm Secure
Attorneys often contact us for IT support. When they do, the first things they ask are, “How are you going to protect our legal practice? What tools will you use? How successful is your security solution for law firms?”
The reason so many are searching for a higher level of cybersecurity is because they’ve read the news about ransomware. They’ve seen the reports about costly data breaches. So, how do you keep your law firm secure? We’ll tell you here.
Use An IT Service Company That Specializes In Cybersecurity For Law Firms
Look for a technology services provider who specializes in IT security solutions for law firms. This gives you the expertise you need to keep your data safe.
Make sure that they understand the regulations that your firm must comply with. When you work with an IT company that specializes in your field, you can expect more effective solutions, along with services that are customized for your needs.
Use a Multi-Layered IT Security Plan
Make sure your IT service company uses a multi-layered security process. Their process for securing your data should evolve as the world of cybercrime does. Your IT services company should stay on top of the latest cyber threats and adapt their security procedures to reflect these changes.
In addition, they should provide:
- Antivirus/Antimalware to protect users’ computers and files from cyber threats like ransomware.
- 24/7 Remote Monitoring & Management to detect and mitigate security threats.
- Mobile Device Monitoring so your confidential data isn’t exposed if an employee’s mobile device is lost or stolen.
- Services like managed firewalls, SPAM filtering, email encryption, backup & disaster recovery, and data-loss prevention.
- Password reports that let you know if someone’s email or computer password is inadequate or hasn’t been changed in a while.
- Patches and updates for software.
- A Two-Factor Authentication solution when your staff accesses client data.
- Warnings about major active scams that your team needs to be aware of.
- Quarterly reviews of security best practices and recommendations for improvement in your practice.
Develop a Business Continuity & Disaster Recovery Policy
Ask your IT company about daily onsite and cloud-based encrypted backups of your computer systems. You must have a backup copy of your data if it’s stolen or accidentally deleted.
Your policy should specify:
- What data is backed up.
- How often it’s backed up.
- Where it’s stored.
- Who has access to the backups.
Backup to both an external drive in your office and a remote, secure, online data center. Set backups to occur automatically and test them regularly for recoverability.
Train Your Employees To Recognize & Respond To Cyber Threats
Ask your IT support company to provide Security Awareness Training. Your employees are the most significant vulnerability in your firm. This training helps them know how to recognize and avoid being victimized by phishing emails and scam websites.
A comprehensive cybersecurity training program will teach your staff how to handle a range of potential situations:
- How to identify and address suspicious emails, phishing attempts, social engineering tactics, and more.
- How to use business technology without exposing data and other assets to external threats by accident.
- How to respond when they suspect that an attack is occurring or has occurred.
With Security Awareness Training they will learn how to handle security incidents when they occur. If your employees and are informed about what to watch for, how to block attempts, and where they can turn for help, this alone is worth the investment.
Use Strong Passwords & Password Managers
Passwords remain a go-to tool for protecting your data, applications, and computer devices. They also remain a common cybersecurity weakness because of the careless way employees go about trying to remember their login information.
Weak passwords are easy to compromise, and if that’s all that stands between your data in the Cloud and in applications, you could be at serious risk for a catastrophic breach.
One of the best ways to maintain complex passwords is with a password manager. Password managers are the key to keeping your passwords secure.
A password manager generates, keeps track of and retrieves complex and long passwords for you to protect your vital online information. It also remembers your PINS, credit card numbers and three-digit CVV codes if you choose this option.
Plus, it provides answers to security questions for you. All of this is done with strong encryption that makes it difficult for hackers to decipher.
Get Deep Scan Audits
A Deep Scan IT Audit determines how your data is handled and protected. It defines who has access to your data and under what circumstances.
It will create a list of the employees or business associates who have access to specific data and how those access privileges are managed and tracked. It helps you know precisely what data you have, where it’s kept, and who has rights to access it.
Deep Scan IT Audits can also ensure that your IT provider’s Remote Management and Monitoring (RMM) systems are working effectively (which you also need for ongoing monitoring of cyber threats). For instance, if you add a new computer to your network, a network assessment scan will flag the latest addition so the RMM tool will monitor it.
This annual or quarterly analysis includes deep-level scans, vulnerability testing, and reporting to accurately identify what is working and to locate any security gaps. Based on the Audit’s findings, cybersecurity experts will provide recommendations and help to create a customized IT security roadmap for your business.
Reports are generated and provided so you can see if there are any gaps in your protection. This provides a higher level of assurance that you are doing everything possible to protect the security of your IT assets.
You’ll have an excellent overview of exactly what’s going on in your network and what exposure you may have sustained. It pinpoints things like active directories that have been compromised or unauthorized users lingering on the system.
Employ Role-Based Access Controls
Limit your employees’ authorization with role-based access controls. This prevents network intrusions and suspicious activities. Define user permissions based on the access required for their particular job.
For example, your receptionist might not need access to client data. Also, know who has access to your data, and enforce a “need-to-know” policy. Restrict access to data to only those who need it to do their jobs.
Ensure that your employees don’t download software into your system. Hackers can trick unsuspecting staff members into downloading malicious software. It then embeds viruses into your system that can lock up or steal your data.
Beef Up Your Wi-Fi Security
Ask your IT support company to assess the Wi-Fi in your office for security. Your IT provider will examine the wireless security measures that you have in place and determine if upgrades must be made to ensure their effectiveness.
No wireless network is entirely safe from the talented hackers out there today. And, without a properly configured wireless infrastructure, your law firm will be vulnerable.
The older your wireless network hardware, the easier it can be hacked. If your wireless isn’t updated to combat the latest cyber threats, your data is at risk. Data losses will cost you so much more than keeping your wireless up to date.
And be alert when using public Wi-Fi. Hackers set up fake clones of public Wi-Fi access points to try and get users to connect to their systems. A fake wireless internet hot spot looks like a legitimate service. When you connect to their wireless network, a hacker can launch a spying attack on your transactions on the Internet.
Before connecting, always check with an authorized representative of the store or facility to ensure you’re accessing their Wi-Fi. Never use your credit cards or work on confidential information when using public Wi-Fi.
Ensure Vendors Employ Cybersecurity Measures
One of the top vulnerabilities for law firms is the lack of cybersecurity of their vendors. Increasingly we’re seeing firms write contracts that require suppliers and vendors to take minimum specific measures to protect data. This is in response to some massive industry hacks that have been linked to poor cybersecurity in suppliers with links into the attacked company.
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