Even before the advent of COVID-19, the legal industry was already considering remote legal workforce arrangements to gain access to experts in niche specialties, boost retention rates, and reduce work-based stress while amplifying productivity. As the pandemic continues to change the structure of business to more fully meet new demands in health and safety, law firms are adjusting, using workflow automation strategies to reduce overhead costs and increase productivity for remote staff.
While this new commitment to technology and access to a remote or hybrid work environment represents a positive — and revenue-producing — change for most legal services, it does come with a fair amount of risk for those firms not invested in securing their remote environments.
Fortunately, it is relatively simple to put the proper tools and education within reach of your remote legal workforce, giving them the means to protect sensitive data — both their own and yours — while maintaining a high level of efficiency.
How to Keep Your Remote Legal Workforce — and Your Data — Secure
Law firms process highly sensitive data for a number of clients, data that ranges from personal and financial client information to proprietary data, making them a prime target for hackers.
In recent months, many law firms have been hit by data breaches including the most recent cyberattack perpetrated on the large and notable law firm, Goodwin Procter.
Ransomware, malware, and other means are being used to compromise security and gain access to critical information and the remote work environment makes it even easier for malicious actors to launch cyberattacks that can cripple or compromise law firms — and their clients.
In answer, law firms interested in keeping their data as secure as possible should invest time and resources into encouraging good cyber hygiene among remote workers, such as:
1. Starting with a Comprehensive Assessment
It is crucial to deploy and become familiar with cybersecurity tools that pinpoint vulnerabilities in a remote work system.
For example, deploying Virtual Private Networks (VPNs), using cloud-based video conferencing tools with inherent security and instant messenger platforms can help employees collaborate while keeping topics and data discussed private and safe.
Getting the assistance of a trusted third-party partner such as a Managed Services Provider (MSP) to help assess your current IT infrastructure, determine vulnerabilities, and create a safer online space for collaboration and communication among remote staff can be invaluable.
2. Applying Multi-Factor Authentication
Using multi-factor authentication provides a failsafe to make it more difficult for data to reach your desktop from a machine that is originating the connection. Security teams can disable the shared drive access from the host to the desktop and deploy multi-factor authentication protocols to ensure only authorized personnel can gain access.
3. Educating Your Remote Legal Workforce on Evolving Hacker Methodologies
Hackers are using the pandemic to increase their use of phishing emails and other social engineering tactics that can help them gain access to corporate data by stealing your employees’ credentials.
To guard against these strategies, develop a strong firm policy on cybersecurity — including best practices — and ensure that all employees are properly trained on how to recognize — and avoid — possible attempts to gain access.
Ensure trainings are conducted at regular intervals to keep up with evolving cyberattack tactics.
Let the Cybersecurity Experts at CDS Help You Protect Your Firm
The legal industry is in one of the hardest positions of any industry as they face the ongoing pandemic. Not only must legal firms be compliant with a large number of data privacy and other regulations, but they must also deal with statutes and rules that vary from location to location.
Now that more firms than ever are moving to a completely remote or hybrid workplace, the need for cybersecurity measures that will help protect your data — and preserve your reputation — is critical.
At CDS, we have expert knowledge of cutting-edge cybersecurity measures, including those that can assist your firm in setting up a remote workspace that is safe, effective, and cost-efficient.
Our Managed IT professionals can assess your current infrastructure against your current needs and goals and develop a multilevel plan to protect data while allowing your remote and in-house employees the ability to communicate and collaborate effortlessly.
Protect your remote legal workforce with state-of-the-art technologies. Contact a CDS representative now and discover how to implement secure strategies for your remote team.