Data Security Risks in Litigation Management
The dangers of email reliance when managing litigated claims and how to reduce the risk
There’s an inherent need for claims litigation professionals and their defense counsel to transfer large amounts of case-related material. Though simple in theory, this practice is rife with complications and inherent security risks. Sharing documents, attachments, updates, tasks, and activities via email can put everyone involved (including parent companies) at great risk.
Most IT security leaders will tell you email communication remains their top security concern. New threats are being developed at an alarming rate, and existing threats like spoofing, phishing, malicious files, and ransomware are now well established and ready to damage organizations’ networks and reputations.
From basic phishing emails to Business Email Compromise (BEC)—where bad actors send emails that look as though they’re from a legitimate source such as a frequently used vendor, law firm, colleague, or supervisor—it’s not uncommon for a busy litigation team member to click a malicious link or open a compromised attachment without giving it a second thought.
According to the FBI’s 2020 IC3 report, phishing tops the list of internet crime types, with incident reports doubling in 2020 over 2019. Also, according to Verizon’s 2021 Data Breach Investigations Report, phishing remains the top action (several years running) for the cause of company data breaches
Reduce the risk of an email security breach
So, what’s a busy litigation management department to do? No one wants to be responsible for having clicked the link or downloaded the file that resulted in millions of dollars in losses and brand damage due to ransomware. Nor do they want to be responsible for releasing the virus that brought down the company’s network for days.
There are a number of established methods available for mitigating the security risks in claims litigation management departments.
Employee training and email filters can help
Most IT security professionals will tell you that an organization’s weakest link in the battle for network security sits firmly with employees. With hundreds of messages coming in daily from law firms, outside vendors and others who contribute to a litigated case, it can be very easy for a bad email to make it through. Employee training programs and implementing email spam filters are two popular lines of defense.
Security filters offer additional layers of protection, but those filters are constantly under attack and quickly become outdated. Not to mention, many filters don’t offer advanced protection against malicious links and files, ransomware, and other threats that can originate from an email.
Remove email from the equation
The most effective route is to remove email communications from the process. If claims professionals and those they work closely with to manage litigated files transition to a secure, online platform to conduct their litigation work, they could completely eliminate the risks inherent to email. Communications, briefs, attachments, and case workflow would live in a secure cloud-based environment. Not only does a litigation management software solution store the critical data necessary to work the claim, but it also provides a system that all related parties can turn to for updated information. This further decreases the need for email since all parties can simply log into the platform to see how the case is progressing, where it is in the settlement process, or any other details.
At CaseGlide, we believe the future for productive and successful litigation management lies beyond email. Litigation management software is the primary tool for communication between claims professionals and their defense counsel. Many successful industries and business practices have evolved past email reliance, and it’s time that litigation management follows suit. In addition to the benefits of closing cases faster and obtaining better outcomes, the use of a collaborative litigation management platform can lower an organization’s network security risks—and that’s something we can all get behind.
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