How can Cyber Essentials help your legal business?

Cyber Essentials can help guard your legal business against the most common cyber threats while demonstrating your commitment to cybersecurity. But what exactly is it, and how does it work?

What is Cyber Essentials? 

Launched in 2014, Cyber Essentials is a certification scheme backed by the Government. It is designed to help businesses uncover risks that they may not otherwise be aware of and guard against the most common cyber threats.

It can be argued that Cyber Essentials is best suited to smaller businesses, with ISO 27001 (the international information security standard) more appropriate for larger organisations. However, Cyber Essentials was designed to be size agnostic. Furthermore, Government advice suggests that Cyber Essentials should be adopted in addition to – rather than instead of – ISO27001.

When implemented correctly, Cyber Essentials should prevent 80% of cyber-attacks.

Why do you need Cyber Essentials?  

Legal businesses have become a key target for cybercriminals. According to research, the majority of law firms have reported suffering a security incident in the past 12 months, with 12% of firms claiming to be recipients of such attacks on a daily basis. A further 30% of firms have identified attacks on either a weekly or monthly basis.

And with data hacks rarely out of the headlines, clients are understandably nervous about data security.

Cyber Essentials shows that your legal business has established strict guidelines and processes to keep sensitive data secure. This data includes things like financial records and personally identifiable information (PII). So, you can demonstrate to potential clients that you have taken the necessary steps to keep them safe.

Just as important, with Cyber Essentials, you get the peace-of-mind that comes with knowing your firm is ready and able to deal with the most common cyber threats. And that it has identified and mitigated any data security vulnerabilities.

How does Cyber Essentials Work?  

The first step is to select a certification body (all specially chosen by the National Cyber Security Centre to oversee Cyber Essentials). Next, you will need to ensure that your firm’s systems and software meet a detailed set of IT requirements set out by Cyber Essentials. The third step in the certification process is to complete a self-assessment questionnaire supplied by your chosen accreditation body.

There are two Cyber Essentials options:

  1. Cyber Essentials. A self-assessment option designed to be light-weight and easy to follow 
  1. Cyber Essentials Plus. All the benefits of Cyber Essentials plus your cyber security is verified by independent experts.  

Security breaches can have a significant impact on your legal business’s reputation and its bottom line. In response, it is more important than ever to budget for adequate security measures and invest in information security certifications.  

Crucially, because smaller firms may not have the time or resources to develop a full-on cybersecurity system, Cyber Essentials has been designed to fit with whatever level of commitment you are able to support. 

You can find out more about Cyber Essentials here.