Cybersecurity Best Practices for Law Firm Employees

law firm employee working from laptop

The basis of any law firm is trust. Whether directed between employees and management, or lawyers and clients, trust is the cornerstone of the legal profession. This is why cybersecurity should be taken so seriously in law firms. A breach of client data could not only lead to financial penalties but also damage the reputation of the firm irreparably. 

In fact, according to the 2019 ABA Cybersecurity Tech Report, 26% of law firms experienced a form of data breach. As cyberattacks continue to skyrocket, this number will only become more staggering if law firms don’t focus on their first line of defense—employees. Learning how to implement cybersecurity best practices for employees is a foundational aspect of your cybersecurity strategy. 

Why Are Law Firms a Target?

Sensitive client data, large sums of money, and the potential for major reputation damage make law firms a prime target for cybercriminals. By March of 2020, nearly 9,200 phishing attacks had been reported. While many of these incidents are financially motivated, it’s increasingly common for hackers to target sensitive client data.

What Are Your Regulatory Obligations?

The legal profession is highly regulated when it comes to cybersecurity. Depending on your jurisdiction, you may be subject to rules and regulations set forth by the ABA, State Bar Associations, state and federal government, or other regulatory bodies. 

For example, the ABA’s Model Rules of Professional Conduct Rule 1:6 requires lawyers to “make reasonable efforts to prevent the inadvertent or unauthorized disclosure of, or unauthorized access to, information relating to the representation of a client.”

Cybersecurity Best Practices For Employees

Your employees are your first line of defense in your cybersecurity infrastructure. There are many cybersecurity best practices for employees that your firm can implement to protect sensitive data and stop hackers.

Multi-Factor Authentication

One of the simplest and most effective cybersecurity measures is multi-factor authentication (MFA). MFA adds an extra layer of security by requiring users to provide two or more pieces of evidence to verify their identity. The most common type of MFA is a combination of something you know (like a password), something you have (like a phone), and something you are (like a fingerprint).

Email Security Practices

Email is one of the most common ways that cybercriminals gain access to sensitive data. Phishing attacks, in which criminals send emails that appear to be from a trusted source in an attempt to trick users into revealing sensitive information, are on the rise. In fact, there has been a 600% increase in phishing attacks since 2020. 

To protect your firm’s email system, require employees to use strong passwords and multi-factor authentication. Additionally, educate employees on how to spot phishing emails and what to do if they receive one.

Password Hygiene

Passwords are the first line of defense against cybersecurity threats, so it’s important to make sure they are strong and secure. Passwords should be at least eight characters long and include a mix of upper- and lower-case letters, numbers, and special characters. Employees should never use the same password for more than one account.

Regular Reviews

To ensure that your firm is following cybersecurity best practices for employees, it’s important to conduct regular reviews. During these reviews, assess the current cybersecurity landscape, identify any gaps in your firm’s defenses, and make changes as needed. Review cybersecurity policies and procedures on a regular basis and update them as necessary.

How Tech Rockstars Can Help Your Law Firm

At Tech Rockstars, we understand the unique cybersecurity challenges law firms face every day. We offer a comprehensive security solution that includes all the cybersecurity best practices for employees, including MFA, email security, password management, security awareness training, and more. 

Our team of cybersecurity experts can help you assess your firm’s cybersecurity needs and implement the best possible solutions as soon as possible. Contact us today to learn more.