Nearly one in five Australian law firms have suffered cyber security breaches in the last two years, as the legal industry faces increasing pressure to improve data security measures.
Research by leading Australian technology company GlobalX and the Australasian Legal Practice Management Association (ALPMA) found that 27 of the 172 firms surveyed, or more than 15 per cent, reported a breach.
The survey also revealed that 87 per cent of firms are concerned about cyber security, with more than 80 per cent saying they would invest in more cyber security training over the next five years.
GlobalX CEO Peter Maloney said that cyber security was an issue that presented considerable challenges to law firms across Australia and it needs to be treated seriously.
“There’s no question that data breaches and hacking activities are some of the biggest threats to legal and conveyancing professionals today,” Mr Maloney said.
“While it can be costly for businesses to invest in the right people and software to protect against these threats, the damage that results from being unprepared is ultimately far more costly.
“Lawyers and conveyancers are entrusted with a significant amount of sensitive client information – not to mention large quantities of funds in trust – so it’s important that they do all they can to minimise the risk so that client information is not compromised or misused.”
Mr Maloney said that GlobalX had invested significant resources in continually updating and strengthening its security measures.
“The level of security we offer is solely dependent on our internal systems, which is why we allocate a large amount of resources towards optimising these systems,” Mr Maloney said.
“As an organisation, we’ve recently made the transition to Google Cloud to upgrade our technology infrastructure and benefit from increased security. We can now be confident and have peace of mind that our data will be stored securely and to the highest standards.
“We also have a comprehensive risk management plan in place, which includes the ability to quickly identify potential cyber-attacks and shut down our systems to prevent further access, if required.”