In case you thought data security for your law firm was a fringe issue, a Florida law firm just paid hackers $2,500 in Bitcoin to ransom back their data. The hackers managed to hold all the law firm’s data hostage, and demanded the Bitcoin (Bitcoins?) in exchange for the key to get it all back.
The office manager described what happened this way:
“Everything we do is scanned. Even our Word documents are converted to pdf’s. They (the hackers) somehow got onto our server and decrypted all of our files,” she said. “They were useless. Nothing was compromised. We just couldn’t get to it.”
Two thoughts: first, it sounds like what the hackers did was to encrypt the files; second, $2,500 sounds like a pittance when it comes to the value of a law firm’s data. Especially considering that hackers did the same thing to a California hospital and are asking for $3.2 million.
Your law firm runs on data: client files, memos, client information, research, etc. Most of that data is confidential. Keeping that data safe and secure should be one of your top priorities as a lawyer.
If you want further reading about what steps you can take to keep your data secure, check out the 4-Step Computer Security Upgrade, or one of the many past articles about keeping your security up to snuff if you use Dropbox or if you run a paperless office. Lawyerist even did an entire podcast about computer security which you can listen to here.