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Cyber security Q&A

The coronavirus situation is causing difficult business conditions and uncertainty for many law firms and solicitors.

The Law Society has advised that unless you are part of the justice system and therefore classed as a key worker, you should be doing all you can to close your office and work from home. That means an unprecedented number of solicitors and staff will be working from home and providing their services digitally, some having never done so before.

This will present many with new cyber security challenges. Below we set out our view how the cybercrime risk is affected by the requirements of social distancing, and of what you can do to protect yourself and your firm.

The change to mass homeworking is that more people might be exposed. And criminals have taken advantage of concern over the Covid-19 outbreak.

  • The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has reported a 400 percent increase in coronavirus related fraud reports in March.
  • They believe this is linked to the increase in homeworking.

However, the basic nature of the threat to solicitors and law firms from cybercrime has not changed.

The money and sensitive information that solicitors and law firms handle is still attractive to criminals.

  • Those criminals are still operating.
  • The cybercrimes we now hear about are using the same basic tactics as criminals were using before the current crisis.

Ransomware is still a threat to firms.

  • With more people working remotely or from their own devices, your risk of encountering ransomware may increase.
  • Most ransomware spreads through phishing campaigns, so training against these will help against ransomware.
  • You should not assume that ransomware that has encrypted client confidential information has not also stolen that information.

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