Cyber risk is everywhere. And it’s evolving on a daily basis
Cyber risk is everywhere. And the real danger is that it’s evolving on a daily basis. Hackers are constantly developing ‘bugs’ or ‘worms’ that can infiltrate even the most complex of IT security systems. These antivirus systems face a continuous battle to keep responding to these attacks, yet the risk isn’t just technological. Humans are just as vulnerable to a hacking scandal. People can be duped into handing over sensitive information, bank details, and client data without realising the person on the end of the phone or email is a fraudster. Cyber risk and data protection ranges from a lost laptop on a train to the most complex of computer code. If you have a website, hold customer data, bank details, medical records, intellectual property, addresses – the list is endless – then you are exposed.
The American market has developed with regulation. Breaches must be disclosed to customers within strict timeframes. Data that goes missing must be tracked and monitored for significant periods of time at vast expense to the victim of an attack. The various regulators also have the power to issue fines and penalties should protocols not be followed. The financial implications of reputational damage must also be considered.
And it looks like this form of regulation is making its way across the pond to the EU. While new legislation is not due until 2016, and indeed the exact make up of it has yet to be confirmed, it will be implemented sooner or later. This will present all companies with a significant challenge – but especially legal practices, no matter what their size.