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The events of the last month, involving the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO)’s plans to fine British Airways and Marriott International a collective £280m for breaches of customer data, have invariably brought the GDPR compliance issue
into a sharper perspective for large corporates.
The new GDPR regulations 2018 regulations brought a new age to the personal data debate and meant that many companies duly overhauled their customer data policies in line with requirements, with much of the regulation surrounding how data is stored, managed, processed
and deleted. However, the data issue is further complicated by a recent considerable rise in cyber security, with law firms, in particular, a key target in this area.
According to the Annual Law Firms’ Survey 2018 by PWC UK, cyber security is a key concern for 82% of the top 100 firms. 60% of the firms were also reported to have suffered a security incident in 2018 resulting in cyber security being a major concern for many law firms.
In Banking, new data released from banking trade body, UK Finance, revealed that incidents of online payment scams reached nearly 85,000 in 2018, with total losses of £354.3m. It was also revealed that in the second half of 2018, £209m was
lost in bank transfer fraud, compared to the £145m lost in the first half of the year. Cyber attackers are able to use personal and financial data to defraud customers, and reroute transactions, by sophistically posing as government agencies
like HMRC, or DVLA, or impersonating a banking site - all with access to their personal data to further validate their claims.
The amount of sensitive data handled by law firms makes them a prime target of cyber-attacks. Poor data management could lead to firms becoming vulnerable to threats such as bank transfer fraud, phishing scams, ransomware or data breaches, which
allow for additional compliance risks. Furthermore, data collected through fraudulent means can be used many years after the event has taken place, and can be used to facilitate deception scams against companies and consumers, making them highly convincing
and far more difficult to guard against.
As digital transformation continues to proliferate, law firms would be wise to look to key
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