Data security is becoming an essential aspect in law firms and lawyers must make this a priority in their firm. Firms rely on this data to be able to serve their clients effectively and must put proper policies and procedures in place to secure this information. Lawyers already have so much to do in their day-to-day activities already and unless they have a full time IT department focusing on this area the business, you may forget about solutions to safeguard this information. We outline a few simple and inexpensive ways to help keep your law offices data secure.
ENCRYPT YOUR FILES - You can easily setup file encryption for your computer. For Windows users you can use BitLocker. For Mac users you can use FileVault. We will go more in-depth in later posts about these tools.
USE STRONG AND COMPLEX PASSWORDS - We recommend using unique passwords. The password should not contain a dictionary word but rather be a phrase such as "Go Tampa Bay1!". This includes a variety of letters, numbers, and symbols. Another great tool are random password generators such as LastPass, 1Password, or KeePass.
USE SECURE CONNECTIONS - Set up a virtual private network (VPN), which provides you with a secure connection to the internet. Any staff needing access to client information away from the office should be accessing this data via a VPN.
FILE PERMISSIONS - Not everyone in the firm will need access to the same files. You need to limit access by setting permissions on the files. This way staff only has access to the information they need to do their work.
ANTI-VIRUS SOFTWARE - A computer virus is a malicious program that self-replicates by copying itself to another program. By installing anti-virus software on all your law office computers, you are adding an extra layer of protection should your employees accidentally get into something suspicious.
Implement the steps above to help secure your clients data. You have practical and ethical reasons to do so, for both your firm and your clients. To continue receiving valuable information for your law office, subscribe to our weekly newsletter where we send you information to help your firm stay protected.