Handling confidential client data is part of everyday life at a small law firm. Social security numbers, financial statements and other sensitive information is often filed away and forgotten about long after a case closes, and keeping confidential documents safe and secure gets harder the more you accumulate. Here are three steps your law firm can take to ensure that client privacy remains under lock and key.
Choose the Correct File Storing Software
First things first, it’s time to digitize. While keeping your files off of the cloud may seem safer, it’s a misconception that digital filing is inherently risky. Choose a software solution with heavy encryption and security features that make sensitive information accessible only to members of your firm who have been granted access. Smokeball provides law firms with bank-grade encryption, so you don’t have to worry about your clients’ information falling into the wrong hands. By backing up matter details and client information to the cloud, Smokeball also ensures that you’ll never lose a client file again.
Protect Your Passwords
Protecting client information with regularly updated passwords is a basic step all firms should take to ensure privacy and security. But putting sensitive information behind password access walls is only the first step. Passwords also need to be updated frequently, ideally every 30 to 60 days. If you can’t remember the last time your firm went through a password refresh, now may be the time. Steer clear of simple passwords that include your firm name or the names of employees. Adding unique characters, switching between upper and lower cases and spelling words with a combination of letters and symbols will prevent hackers from guessing your passwords and will keep your firm’s information safe.
Avoid Free Wifi
While free wifi at airports and coffee shops may seem like a happy miracle, public wifi is often not secure and can present an opportunity for hackers to locate shared files, wipe hard drives and gain access to sensitive information. If your employees regularly work on-the-go, make sure they understand these risks and take the necessary precautions. Setting up a virtual private network (VPN) or providing employees with their own password-protected 4G mobile hotspots are two ways to make sure that even when your team is on-the-go, your firm’s information is encrypted and kept safe from outsiders.
Security is key to maintaining client trust. For more tips on how to ensure you keep client privacy under lock and key, take a look at our blog post: Is Your Small Law Firm Keeping Your Passwords Safe?