The “dark overlord” strikes the practice of law: what law firms can do to protect themselves

Cybersecurity breaches involving law firms are on the rise with each passing year. Law firms are prime targets for cyber criminals seeking confidential and sensitive information because of the various types of legal work that law firms normally handle for their clients. Whether it be mergers and acquisitions, the use of intellectual property, purchase agreements, bankruptcy or even litigation involving divorce, law firms are a rich depository for highly confidential and sensitive information. As a result, law firms must employ comprehensive security measures to protect themselves from security breaches or risk being on the losing end of a costly malpractice claim, and suffer severe reputational harm.

Law Firms Continue To Be Targeted By Cybercriminals

According to the American Bar Association (“ABA”) 2018 Legal Technology Survey Report, 23% of the law firms who participated in the survey reported that their law firm experienced a data breach. Although this may be just a 1% increase from the 22% who reported a breach in 2017, it is important to understand that this is an increase of 8% from the stable percentages reported from 2013 through 2016. The 2018 survey report also revealed that security breaches fluctuated with firm size – 14% for solo law firms, 24% for firms employing 2-9 attorneys, approximately 24% for firms with 10-49 attorneys, 42% for firms with 50-99 attorneys, and approximately 31% for those firms employing 100 or more attorneys.

Latest Law Firm Security Breaches

The notorious criminal group called “The Dark Overlord” has a history of committing data breaches of high profile companies such as Gorilla Glue, Netflix, Larson Studios, multiple healthcare companies, and Little Red Door Cancer Agency. Their goal is simple – steal sensitive information and then extort payment from the victims by threatening to release the sensitive information to the public. ..Read more..

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