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The emergence of data analysis, cloud computing, and other Information Age technologies has been a boon for the legal industry. Yet the sheer amount of data being generated today is staggering. An IBM study revealed that we create 2.5 quintillion bytes of data on a daily basis, and nearly 90 percent of all existing data was created in just the last two years. Given the size of these numbers, the ability to effectively secure sensitive information has never been more critically important, or more challenging.
In this landscape, it’s no surprise that data breaches grow more numerous with each passing year. Bloomberg recently reported that 2016 was a record year for security breaches, with the total number of incidents increasing 40 percent over 2015. In one notable episode, a Russian hacker was able to extract the confidential client files of 50 law firms.
Such lapses are costly. According to the Aon Corporation, the average cost of a data breach is $217 per compromised file. It’s also important to realize that not every breach is the result of criminal activity. The Aon Corporation also reports that more than half of all privacy breaches are the result of employee or system error.
The cumulative effect of these intrusions and lapses has been acutely felt by the legal industry. Recent surveys show that two-thirds of Chief Legal Officers and General Counsels rate information privacy and data security as being “very” or “extremely” important. That same survey showed that the number of these executives rating these priorities as “extremely important” has risen by more than a third since 2014.
A commitment to key information security principles, such as those in the ACC Model Information Protection and Security Controls for Outside Counsel Possessing Company Confidential Information, and other frameworks like the GDPR and NYCRR, offers a variety of critical benefits. Download the white paper to learn more.
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