LegalEx 2022: Key Takeaways and Insights for the Legal Sector
On the 23rd November I visited the ExCeL in London to attend 2022’s LegalEx convention. The necessity of cyber security for legal firms and other methods of future-proofing your company were among the topics discussed.
In a traditionally conservative industry, Legal Technology has ushered in new ways of providing legal services and digitising processes. This year’s LegalEx was about the ways in which businesses and legal practises can adapt to the ongoing digital transformation, from document automation to cybersecurity.
Below are some of the key insights from the event.
Law Firms are at a greater risk for cyber security threats
Banks and other financial institutions present a unique risk of exposure for legal firms. They are capable of handling sensitive information but lack the same budgets and investment, meaning they can be a target for data breaches and fraud. Law firms are described as the ‘soft underbelly’ in terms of cyber crime.
There should be greater engagement with staff around the threat landscape and risks to the business, alongside running security awareness campaigns. There is a need to be more collaborative and foster a culture based on openness, transparency, and no blame. The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) says that a no blame culture should be adopted, because of the catastrophic implications of a security breach. Employees may “not covering the grenade before if goes off” by not speaking out if they click a malicious link or accidentally leak data.
Hybrid/remote working remains a concern
The COVID pandemic saw Legal firms shift to remote or hybrid working and more modern technology services, but there remains some concerns and reservations about fully embracing technology and it being seen as an enabler.
In fact, some firms have voiced concerns about losing their identity and USP (often their people) by being too technology driven/ orientated.
This is largely down to the firms lack of understanding the pivotal role that technology can play in their organisation; concerns that stem back to not understanding technology on an output level and letting go of the ‘this is how we’ve always done it’ mentality. Remember, technology isn’t there to replace; it’s there to enhance – and with the right IT partner to help you unlock that value, it becomes easier to adopt this mentality.
Moving to the cloud is a necessity
While innovation may not be as dramatic as other sectors, law firms need to keep up with the pace of change and market changes. Moving to the cloud and modern platforms is more of a necessity rather than innovation. Being left behind increases security risks, delays the speed of necessary change (such as remote working during the pandemic) and lowers productivity within the team.
The focus should be on educated and calculation innovation, being particularly diligent about the platforms and tools used across the firm – especially where information security and protection is concerned.
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