How does Cyber Security Impact Your Law Firm?

The Department of Homeland Security has declared October National Cyber Security Awareness Month.  Unfortunately, cyber security can have more impact on your firm than you might like to admit. From international organized crime’s perspective, your law firm is a soft target. Depending on your areas of practice, there can be substantial amounts of personally identifiable non-public information in your files that may be extremely valuable to the criminal organizations that hack and hijack American computers. Family, estate, business, securities and intellectual property firms are particularly good targets.

What can you do?  Ask your network support people about encrypting data at rest, encrypting mobile devices and a hardware firewall. Many firms imagine they have a real firewall when all they have is firewall software. Some studies indicate firewall software is less than 10% effective. Most firms have bad security because they don’t know what to ask for and network support services hesitate to recommend upgrades that would make their services less price competitive.

Does professional liability insurance cover your risk? While some professional liability policies include network security/data breach in the professional liability limit, there are problems with this approach. While such coverage is definitely better than nothing, the scope and breadth of the coverage is extremely limited compared to a good stand alone cyber security policy. For firms that have the resources to afford the modest cost of a specialty policy, I highly recommend it, even if the professional liability or general office policy includes a cyber coverage feature.

For more information about the coverage provided by your current policies and options that may be available, talk to your agent or give me a call at 732-223-6611 ext. 108.

Kelan J. Vorbach, CIC is the Professional Liability Program Manager with John B. Wright Insurance. He has been interviewed by the national press (most recently National Underwriter, October 2013) and has been featured expert on nationally syndicated radio. You can check learn more at


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