According to the American Bar Association (ABA), lawyers have a duty to safeguard client data. For instance, the confidentiality of information (Module Rule 1.6) states that a lawyer is obligated to keep confidential all information related to the representation of a client.
Law firms are expected to keep data safe through increased security measures. Unfortunately, hackers are increasingly using social engineering attacks as a way of gaining access to sensitive data that is stored on law firm networks.
Once a hacker is successful at penetrating a system, a law firm could be exposed to a data breach and break ABA’s code of ethics. As a result, law firms could face severe penalties and have to close down their practice permanently.
Learn more about the most common types of social engineering attacks and how your law firm can protect against them.
What Are Social Engineering Attacks and What Are the Most Common Types?
Social engineering is a type of cyber attack that uses manipulation and deception to gain access to an organization’s private information. It can range from phishing emails and malicious links to phone scams and fake websites. These types of attacks are becoming increasingly common, and law firms are particularly vulnerable due to their sensitive data.
Here are some of the most common types of social engineering attacks that law firms should be aware of:
Phishing is the most common type of social engineering attack. It involves sending an email or text message that appears to come from a legitimate source, such as a financial institution or government agency. The message contains malicious links or downloads which, if clicked on, can gain access to the user’s data.
Vishing is similar to phishing, but instead of sending emails or text messages, attackers use voice calls and automated recordings. The attacker will pretend to be from a legitimate organization and attempt to get the victim to provide confidential information.
Baiting involves using an attractive offer, such as a free download or gift, to lure victims into downloading malicious software that can steal their information.
Pretexting is a form of social engineering where attackers use false pretenses to gain access to private information. They pretend to be someone else, such as a bank representative or government official.
Tailgating is when an attacker follows a legitimate user into a secured area without proper authorization. Once inside, the attacker can gain access to sensitive information or systems.
How Do These Types of Social Engineering Attacks Affect Law Firms?
Cybercriminals are heavily targeting law firms for the sensitive data that they hold. The types of social engineering attacks mentioned above are particularly dangerous for law firms as they can easily gain access to confidential data and compromise the security of the firm.
What Can Law Firms Do to Protect Themselves From These Attacks?
Law firms should be aware of the different social engineering attacks and take steps to protect themselves. These include:
- Educating staff on how to identify and avoid these types of attacks.
- Implementing a comprehensive cybersecurity policy with clear guidelines for employees.
- Installing anti-virus software, firewalls, and other security measures.
- Regularly monitoring for suspicious activity.
- Storing sensitive data in a secure environment.
- Regularly updating passwords.
What to Do If Your Law Firm Has Been Hacked
If your law firm has been hacked, take immediate action to recover by following these steps:
- Contact your lawyer and/or cybersecurity insurance provider.
- Implement Your incident response plan, which will guide you on when to involve your IT team or external security specialist to assess the damage and implement measures to prevent further attacks.
- Notify any affected clients and ensure their information is secure.
Lastly, report the incident to law enforcement so that they can investigate the attack and help prevent future ones. With the right precautions and security measures, you can protect your law firm from social engineering attacks.
Protect Your Law Firm Against Social Engineering Attacks with Noftek
At Noftek, we know how hard it is to protect your law firm against social engineering attacks. That’s why we offer a comprehensive suite of cybersecurity solutions designed to keep your data safe and secure. Our team of experts will help you create a security policy, monitor for suspicious activity, and protect any confidential information that may be at risk.
Contact us today to learn more about how Noftek can help protect your law firm from hackers.