A recent survey involving 3,500 law firms conducted by Access Legal recently reported that many law firms are overlooking updating their cybersecurity policies or conducting adequate data protection impact assessments.
Analysis of the data found that more than 40% of law practices had failed to completely update their cybersecurity policies since switching to predominantly remote working from March 2020. In addition, 49% of firms confirmed that they had not completed a data protection impact assessment designed to identify potential data risks. Not completing a data protection impact assessment increases the risk to both client and staff data. Additionally, around 25% of law firms had not reviewed their health and safety assessments when remote working was enforced with 40% not reviewing or updating their anti-money laundering risk assessments.
In June the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) began to enforce action against firms that were not fulfilling their anti-money laundering obligations. The SRA fined six firms that took over twelve months to comply with new regulations.
It should also be noted that 85% of law firms said they were planning to introduce a hybrid working model with staff spending their week mixed between home and office working. In those situations, the SRA are warning firms to extra vigilant as those that work at home are at higher risk of being targeted by cyberattacks.
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We act for a large number of law firms across all three of our offices and offer a wide range of services which are tailored to meet their individual needs. Our legal client base consists of a multitude of firms of varying structure and size, from sole traders to limited companies and LLPs with corporate members.
Our understanding of the unique issues that many in the sector are facing, combined with our technical experience, allows our solicitor specialists to provide you with proactive, commercial and informed accountancy and tax advice.
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