The Urgent Necessity of Mobile Device Policy for Law Firms
Law firms are bound to handle client information in the most secure manner possible. They have to handle sensitive and confidential documents of their clients with absolute trust and not a bit of the information must get leaked. In earlier days, the documents were in physical form and they were stored in secure physical cabinets. With adoption of digital technologies, computers came to be widely used. However, to ensure security, all computer systems were kept connected only through an internal computer network. Later on, as internet connectivity became a necessity, and more secure Firewalls and cyber security systems were built, employees working at different geographical locations could connect to the central computer servers of the law firm for faster and better sharing of resources and information.
Mobile devices – such as laptops, tablets, smartphones and other devices are widely used in Law firms. Further, many have also allowed Bring-your-own-device (BYOD). This has led to a plethora of devices of different configurations, capabilities, operating systems, and firmware. Cyber criminals target vulnerabilities in these devices to steal and manipulate the data transmitted or stored. The mobile devices (considered to be Endpoints in cybersecurity terms) used by any Firm’s employees are considered to be a weak link in the security. If the client data does get compromised, the Firm may have to face colossal lawsuits, in addition to loss of reputation, which may actually make the Firm close down. Hence, security management is a major challenge for Law Firms.
Steps to Mitigate Security Risks
All employees – from the top management/partners to the new hires – must be educated on security threats and the safe cyber security practices. The Firm must define a security risk assessment plan, identify the possible vulnerabilities in the processes, employees and the technology used, and take steps to plug the loop holes. Leakage or unauthorized access of confidential data must be prevented.
Mobile Devices, BYOD and Mobile Device Policy
Law firms that do not have a BYOD policy are at considerable risk of a breach. The Law firm must define a detailed, stringent Mobile Device Policy considering all possible factors associated with BYOD too. Firms must allow only devices that have high mobile security.
Mobile Device Management (MDM) Solutions
MDM enables a Law Firm to control and monitor mobile and BYOD devices used by the employees of the Firm. Considering that the devices may have different OS, firmware and software. This makes the work of IT administrators easy.
There are advanced MDM security systems such as Comodo’s SecureBox Device Management solutions that provide complete security for the mobile devices in the hands of the employees. This is necessary as data can get stolen through MiTM attacks.
Law Firms must define a robust Mobile Device Policy if they need to secure client information, and as well avail the benefits of allowing mobile devices for use by employees.