Protecting Yourself From Cybercrime Dangers: A Backup Could Save Your Practice After a Cybercrime Incident

Cybercrime dangers are many, complex and ever-changing. Hardly a day goes by without another news report of a data breach or other cyber-related scam or theft. Cyber criminals have considerable resources and expertise, and can cause significant damage to their targets. Cyber criminals specifically target law firms as law firms regularly have funds in their trust accounts and client data that is often very valuable. This article, from the December 2013 issue of LAWPRO Magazine, reviews the specific cybercrime dangers law firms need to be concerned about, and how they can mitigate their risks.

Every law firm has huge amounts of irreplaceable data on its servers, desktop computers, laptops, tablets and smartphones.

A cybercrime incident such as a malware infection or the hacking of firm systems could result in the destruction or loss of firm data. Having a current and full backup of all firm data will be essential for recovering from such an incident with the least possible interruption to a firm’s operations. And beyond any concern about a cybercrime incident, every law firm should have a current full backup of firm data as part of its disaster recovery plan.

When keeping past copies of backups, consider that firm systems could have an undetected malware infection for a considerable period. If you have an undetected infection, you may have to go back in time to get a backup that is clean or has uncorrupted data. For this reason, you may want to keep a series of past backups (e.g., daily for last week, end of week for last month, end of month for last 3 months, quarterly, etc.) so that you can do a complete and clean restoration of your data.

There are many options for doing data backups, including using a dedicated backup system, external hard drives or other portable media, or the cloud. Apple users can easily set up an automatic backup with Time Machine.

Our “Data backup options and best practices” article, available on the practicePRO website, can help ensure you have a current and full backup of all the data in your office.

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