I’m always thinking about the risks that lawyers face, so here’s a question for anyone who is tasked with law firm management….

Q: What is one of the biggest business risks that lawyers currently face?

A: Cyber security, to coin a current phrase

But what does that actually mean? Small phrase, big subject!

From the practical steps you can take to safeguard your business data when on the move (sounds simple enough, like not having confidential conversations where you can be overheard on busy trains), ensuring that devices can be remotely wiped in the event of theft or loss, systems and checks for ensuring that website and social media content is securely controlled, to ensuring that your IT is adequately protected from hackers and thieves.

So, where to start? Risk awareness for all staff is a key factor, so I suggest starting with the free Law Society Cyber Security training available at:

http://cpdcentre.lawsociety.org.uk/course/6707/cyber-security-for-legal-and-accountancy-professionals

Then take a look at your Business Continuity Management Plan and ensure that you are prepared for all the types of risk outlined in the training, so that you could react swiftly and decisively to limit the damage. In particular, log every IT based “interruption event” and its effects so that you can, over time, assess more accurately the specific risks your own business faces and the lessons you have learnt.

If you are still not persuaded, take a look at the latest fines for data breaches from the ICO’s office and tell me you’re relaxed!

Fiona Gillam runs risk and compliance consultancy for lawyers and can be contacted on 0757 0793728

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