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Do AI-Influenced Cyber-Attacks Pose a Big Problem for Law Firms?

As AI technology advances, some experts are warning that it could be used by cyber attackers to launch more sophisticated and difficult-to-detect cyber-attacks. This is a concern for law firms, as they are often a target for such attacks. To protect themselves, law firms need to be aware of the risks posed by AI-influenced cyber-attacks and take steps to mitigate those risks.

What Are AI-Influenced Cyber-Attacks?

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is a technology coming to the forefront of mainstream technology. It is said to possess a degree of human intelligence. AI computers, like the movies, can learn, reason, and apply the vast amount of data it has stored to various acts. When it comes to real-life applications, artificial intelligence is still relatively new. However, this has not stopped cyber criminals from using this technology to perform cyber-attacks and hacking.

Manipulating an AI system can be simple as it is built on the data sets used to train it; making subtle changes can slowly move the AI in the wrong direction, leading the system to malfunction and expose its weak spots. Cyber-criminals or hackers can reverse engineer AI systems to access sensitive data sets used to train them.

What Potential Risks Do Law Firms Face When It Comes To Cyber-Attacks?

Law firms are a lucrative target for cybercrime as it holds volumes of valuable confidential data such as personally identifiable information and intellectual property. There are numerous attacks that law firms face daily. Research from the American Bar Association (ABA) found that nearly one-third of surveyed attorneys experienced a security breach in 2020.

Credential Theft

Credential theft is the most commonly used to receive information from law firms. It involves a malicious email designed to trick the receiver into opening it and sharing their information. If successful, the cyber-criminal may sell the credentials or move further into the IT network to compromise sensitive documents and client data.

Financial Redirection

This attack occurs when an attacker intercepts payment between you and a client. After gaining access to your email address- probably through credential theft – they may email clients from your account asking them to redirect payment to a new bank account.

Ransomware

Ransomware encrypts important files and information. Victims may receive a notification to pay in exchange for receiving their data back. These attacks may begin with an email, or cybercriminals may gain entry through an outdated operating system.

One of the significant risks for a law firm is the loss of clients, and a security incident can damage the reputation and integrity of any firm. If there is a loss of sensitive data, there is a high probability that clients will go elsewhere for legal representation. Law firms should have an updated security system; it could mean the difference between winning a lucrative contract and losing a major client.

Why Can AI-Influenced Attacks Be More Challenging To Defend Against?

AI technology is more difficult to defend against because it is a dual-use area of technology. As it expands, the technology can be used for positive applications as well as negative ones.  

AI systems are known to have human qualities, as in it can learn and adapt, but they can also exceed human capabilities and perform a task better than a human could. In that case, why can’t it perform cyber-attacks better than any cybercriminal could?

Using AI systems can increase anonymity and psychological distance because it is a machine committing the crime, and that takes the empathy out of the action. Many new AI algorithms are reproduced in days or weeks, with their software easily obtainable through the internet, making it difficult to defend against. It is a rapidly expanding area of technology.

There are some specific steps that law firms can take to protect themselves from AI-influenced cyber-attacks:

Complex Passwords

Using complex passwords or a password manager to create and store unique passwords for every account on the network is a quick way to reduce a cyber-attack.

Restriction on Data

Top management should only have access to restricted data. It should be given the highest level of security with limited access. While private and public data should be provided with fewer restrictions. All data should be in the cloud as a precautionary step if a ransomware attack happens.

Encryption Software

Consider using encryption software to encrypt your emails and files. This precaution can help stop email and social engineering attacks. Also, protect your employee’s mobile devices with encryption and remote data-wiping software.

The Importance Of Working With A Trusted Client Portal To Help Mitigate The Risk Of Cyber Attacks

While there are many steps that businesses can take to protect themselves from cyber-attacks, one of the most effective is to work with a trusted client portal provider like Clinked. By using a secure client portal, law firms can mitigate the risk of cyber-attacks by ensuring that sensitive data is stored securely and that only authorized users can access it.

In addition to providing a secure environment for storing and sharing data, Clinked also offers several other features that can help businesses protect themselves from cyber-attacks. For example, Clinked provides two-factor authentication, which adds an extra layer of security by requiring users to confirm their identity before accessing the portal. Clinked also offers several other security features, such as password protection and data encryption, that can further reduce the risk of cyber-attacks.

To learn more about how our client portal can benefit your law firm, please contact Clinked today.

Bakhyt Weeks

Bakhyt is a seasoned business growth professional, international marketing consultant and entrepreneur. She is currently Head of Growth at Clinked and a founder of EngineeringClicks.com. Throughout her career she’s been an owner of multiple digital businesses in e-publishing, e-commerce, brand licensing and affiliate marketing. Bakhyt’s main interests lie in business growth, data, performance analytics and SEO.

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