Success in the legal industry is gauged by positive outcomes for clients, generating a steady stream of clients and remaining abreast of the latest alterations to the law. It is awfully easy for data protection and cyber security to be lost in the shuffle. Do not be intimidated by hardware, software and webs security. You do not have to be a tech aficionado in order to keep your law firm data secure. Protection starts with a basic awareness and understanding of threats and how they can be mitigated.
The Power of Passwords
Passwords are the most basic means of combating cyber threats. Hackers will find it easy to pilfer data if your team is not using passwords or using uber-simple passwords. The question is what, exactly, constitutes a formidable password. Use a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols when setting passwords. Make sure some of the letters are upper case and others are lower case.
Above all, the password should be a minimum of eight characters and not be words found in the dictionary. Furthermore, lawyers and legal support staff should not use the same characters over and over or numbers in sequential fashion such as “bbbb” or “1234”. Try to make your passwords at least 12 characters in length.
Do not use the same passwords on several apps and websites. It is also a mistake to share passwords with others. If you are afraid of losing or forgetting your password, take advantage of a password manager. This secure tool saves usernames as well as passwords for the easy organization of all login credentials.
Online Security Beyond Passwords
Every law firm should use multi-factor authentication. Aside from the password, there should be a second layer of security such as a cryptographic key, ID badge or fingerprint. Though such a two or three-step process for logging in will take a bit more time, it will also prevent hackers from accessing your sensitive information. Looking at your email or phone for a password to complete the process for logging in will only take a couple seconds. This extra step will become second nature after a few logins.
Consider Cyber Insurance
The American Bar Association reports about 25% of law firms with 500+ employees have endured a cybersecurity breach. As time progresses and technology becomes that much more important, more law firms and other businesses are adding cyber insurance. Even if your law firm does not have hundreds of employees, you should still consider cyber insurance. This insurance is best used in unison with your existing cybersecurity as opposed to being relied upon as a replacement.