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Legal IT audit reveals significant flaws in law firm security

Legal IT audit reveals significant flaws in law firm security


A simple omission by legal IT Staff has led to over half of SRA registered law firms in the UK vulnerable to scams

Self Studio London's cybersecurity audit exposes a concerning 56% vulnerability among SRA registered law firms, lacking DMARC protection against email spoofing. In a cybersecurity audit, Self Studio London has uncovered a significant vulnerability within SRA (Solicitors Regulation Authority) registered law firms in the UK. The study, conducted in early 2024, reveals a startling statistic: 56% of these firms are susceptible to 'email spoofing,' a deceptive tactic allowing attackers to impersonate legitimate email senders.

The comprehensive analysis targeted 3,964 law firms listed on the SRA register with operational websites. The results are alarming, with 2,225 of these firms lacking DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance) records – a critical defence mechanism against email spoofing. DMARC records play a pivotal role in verifying the authenticity of emails sent from a domain, preventing attackers from forging email identities.

Email spoofing poses severe security risks, enabling attackers to manipulate the sender's address in an email, often masquerading as a trusted source. This tactic can lead to phishing attacks, where recipients are deceived into divulging sensitive information, or the distribution of malware through seemingly legitimate emails.

The gravity of Self Studio London's findings is amplified by the nature of information handled by law firms, emphasizing the urgent need for robust cybersecurity practices. The absence of DMARC records exposes law firms to successful email spoofing attacks, jeopardizing not only their security but also the confidentiality of their clients, who are frequently involved in sensitive legal matters.

This vulnerability underscores a critical oversight in the cybersecurity practices of UK law firms, prompting a call to action for the legal industry. Self Studio's audit serves as a stark reminder for firms to prioritize email security and implement essential measures, such as DMARC, to mitigate the risks associated with email-based threats.

Self Studio London strongly recommends that all law firms conduct a thorough review of their email security protocols and swiftly adopt DMARC records. This proactive approach will not only shield firms and their clients from potential fraud and data breaches but will also enhance the overall trust and reliability of communications within the legal sector.

If you have any doubts about your setup, contact Self Sudio 

Photoby Robert Kloosterhuis - (original size version), CC BY-SA 2.0,