How can you effectively mitigate cyber threats?
Due to the volume and nature of the information assets that are stored and processed within the legal sector, it is crucial that firms implement measures to ensure that they are protected from cyber threats. As previously mentioned, a data breach can be catastrophic to any organisation, but due to the ethical considerations associated with the information assets processed by legal firms, the damage caused by a data breach could be colossal. Non-compliance with GDPR is an offence that will not only result in a fine of either 4% of your organisation’s annual global turnover or 20 million euros (approx. £17.5 million), but data subjects also have the right to seek compensation in the event of a data breach.
A data breach could result in your organisation losing confidential client data which in turn could lead to legal disputes due to disrupted cases and missed deadlines, affecting your clients, not only yourselves. Consequently, you would be facing severe reputational damage, and the costs to restore systems, data and infrastructure are significant.
Cyber threats are not all as advanced as you might expect. For example, one of the most reported threats is phishing. Without adequate training or an internal cyber aware culture, it is easy to fall victim to these types of attack; and Cyber Essentials is just one example of an effective tool that would support you to mitigate them.
With this information being readily available, wouldn’t you agree that cyber security is worth taking seriously?How we can help
We understand that cyber security may be daunting, so here at Secarma, we offer several Information Security Management services that you can utilize to mitigate cyber threats.
Some examples of our services include:
- Cyber Essentials (Basic and Plus) Certification
- Incident Response Planning
- Vulnerability Assessment
- Cyber Security Maturity Assessment
Cyber Essentials is a great way to get an understanding of your security posture and the measures that your organisation can take to protect your information assets. Cyber Essentials was introduced by the UK government in 2014; and the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) recommends Cyber Essentials to all organisations based in or trading with the UK. The areas of vulnerability that Cyber Essentials aims to assess include:
- Secure Configuration
- Security Update Management
- User Access Controls
- Password Based Authentication
- Malware Protection
By implementing these technical controls, your organisation can defend itself against the most common cyber threats. Not only this, but Cyber Essentials is recognised by the Law Society: The Law Society’s self-assessment checklist states for Lexcel 6.1:
“The department or the organisation must have an information management and security policy and should be accredited against Cyber Essentials.”
Incident Response Planning should be a fundamental in your organisation’s Risk Management strategy. For example, you may fall victim to a Ransomware attack, and in the event that this occurs, it is vital to the survival of your organisation that you respond quickly. There are crucial steps that must be taken to limit the damage that can be caused, such as isolating the infected systems and devices, notifying the appropriate personnel (IT/Cyber security teams, senior management, and legislation bodies when necessary), measuring the extent of the infection to determine the damage, including whether any data has been encrypted or stolen, and if you can, determining the type of ransomware where possible.
A ransomware attack can result in significant consequences for a law firm, including financial losses, reputational damage, and significant legal implications. It is essential to implement comprehensive security measures and backup strategies to minimise the risk of such an attack.
Vulnerability Assessment. Knowledge is power, so understanding your organisations vulnerabilities and how to remediate them is essential in avoiding a cyberattack. A vulnerability scan is a tool that can help you to identify and understand the vulnerabilities within your networks and support you in eliminating them.
A vulnerability scan is part of a vulnerability assessment, which is often part of a Risk Management Strategy; and a vulnerability scan is used to provide a prioritised list of vulnerabilities within your organisation’s networks – Critical, High, Medium, and Low vulnerabilities.
These scans are necessary because of the dependency organisations have on information technology such as the cloud, social media, and Internet of Things (IoT) devices to store and process information assets. So, the prioritisation of vulnerabilities is a useful tool for IT departments because it can be a challenging task for them to ensure all software is always up to date and protected; by having a report ranking their ‘to do’ list in priority order, they can begin to eliminate vulnerabilities in order of importance.
Most cyberattacks exploit known vulnerabilities, which is why it is important to ensure that software updates, patches and fixes are taken care of.
A Cyber Security Maturity Assessment is a risk measurement activity that can be used to assess an organisations security standard holistically against established security control frameworks or compliance standards. To help an organisation understand their current information security baseline and identify any significant gaps in technical controls, policies, and procedures.
A CSMA allows your organisation to:
- Identify and evaluate your existing implementation of security controls.
- To communicate security challenges with associated system owners and organisational stakeholders and agree a prioritised approach for security investment and where subject matter expertise could add value to the organisations information security program.
- As an initial gap analysis and risk assessment activity to help you understand the effectiveness of implemented security controls across your organisation and identify areas where further security assurance activities may be beneficial for risk or system owners- such as manual Penetration Testing.
- Understand your current security baseline score and compare baseline assessment scores against organisations of a similar size within a vertical, which allows security leaders and practitioners to provide context on the baseline of your organisation in comparison to other similarly sized organisations.
- Help you to communicate security risks and security control challenges in a non-technical format and have transparent conversations on how changes can be made to existing technical controls, processes and policies and procedures.
To gain further insight on your organisation’s security posture, and how our Information Security Management services can help you to mitigate cyber threats please feel free to contact us here at Secarma on 0161 513 0960 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and speak to one of our Cyber Security Experts who will be happy to support your security needs.