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5 Tips to Optimize your Legal Firm’s Website Security

The legal industry exists as a guidepost for minimally acceptable behavior in society. What if the same industry was targeted by malicious hackers who steal their data and let confidential information out?

Well, believe it or not, in the UK alone, of law firms reported an information security incident in 2017; an increase of 20% YOY. Given the fact that all types of business, including professional services like lawyers, use some form of digital communication or services to carry out day-to-day affairs.

In other words, if you are working in the legal industry or are operating a law firm, you are at serious risk. You might be able to protect your defendant, but if you want protection you better safeguard your law firm’s website.

How to do that? Lost amidst legal battles you might have little time to spare to think about your website’s security. What you need is a set of tips for security that can keep your website security strong even when you do not have time to attend to it.

Here are some such tips that will take care of your website’s security.

Update the website CMS

CMS stands for a content management system. It is the foundation upon which the website is built. The most popular CMS systems include WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal. The engineers of these CMS platforms keep updating the backends from time to time to keep it secure and stable.

The updates are usually carried out automatically or manually as is configured in the CMS settings. Opting for automatic updates would be easier since it will save you a lot of time and effort. On the other hand, a manual update will be required you to go and check for updates frequently and running the updates manually. Whether manual or automatic make sure that you always keep your website CMS updated.

Upgrade to HTTPS

If you are already using an HTTP website, you must consider moving to HTTPS. The HTTPS bar is made possible by an SSL certificate. SSL Certificate secures important information like usernames, passwords, credit card details and more. It provides privacy, critical security and data integrity for both your websites and your users’ personal data.

There are types of SSL certificates available in the market. Like, if you handle many domains then it is recommended to buy SAN SSL certificate which secures multiple domains. They also provide numerous benefits like better SEO ranking and better customer trust.

Set up strong passwords

As a legal professional, will you keep your case files in the open? No, right? You will ensure it is kept under lock and key where it is inaccessible by anyone else. Similarly, your website backend also needs strong protection. In the digital world, basic protection comes in the form of passwords.

A strong password made up of alphanumeric characters and of adequate length (minimum 8 characters) will help protect your admin console.

Keep confidential data offline

Data like client files, previous case files, downloads from the judiciary, etc. can be considered as confidential data. Of course, you are free to include any other data as confidential data. The point is, these confidential data must be kept offline far from the reach of cybersecurity criminals.

So, it is recommended to keep such confidential data offline in encrypted hard disks or other storage forms which cannot be accessed online. You might miss out on the instant accessibility to these files, but they sure will remain safe from cybersecurity threats like viruses, ransomware, spyware, etc.

Keep website data backup

Worst case scenario, what if your website crashes or is taken siege by hackers? In fact, ransomware can take control of your machines and lock you out all the data that is stored in it. For a legal firm, this could mean a fatal blow to their reputation. One from which revival is almost impossible. No client ever wants to know that their lawyer’s systems containing their data were taken hostage by hackers or ransomware software.

The best thing you can do is to take backups whenever possible. Schedule a calendar to take regular backups of data so that even in the event of a security mishap you can always bounce back to your feet with the backup data.

Use security plugins or extensions

Like antivirus software for laptops and desktops, there are security plugins and extensions that you can use to protect your website. These plugins and extensions can be configured in your website’s backend in the CMS to safeguard your website from harm.

You can find a variety of security plugins and extensions ranging from free ones to premium paid ones with a diverse range of features. They offer comprehensive website protection including vulnerability assessment, DDoS attacks prevention, brute force attack protection, anomaly reporting and so on.

The wrap

There is no other industry or profession which requires data integrity or cybersecurity more than the legal profession. These tips steps must help you secure your website. If needed you can hire a resource on a temporary basis to set up the security systems so that your website remains stronger.

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