Only 6% of Law Firms Protect Their Money Transfers

We consider the risks associated with money transfer fraud which in 2018 saw c.£11m of client money be compromised as a result of cyber fraud.

Law firms are failing in their efforts to tackle the rising risk of cyber crime.

Even with £millions continuing to be fraudulently redirected, with the associated reputational impact and knock on effect on professional indemnity insurance premiums, most law firms have not implemented even the most basic cyber security measures.

The research has been undertaken by a leading provider of risk management tools to the legal sector, Lawyer Checker.

In a series of insight articles we’ll review how firms are failing to implement simple cyber strategies that will protect their business, protect client funds, and communicate a cyber journey to PI insurers.

In our first two articles we considered the low take up amongst law firms of cyber security products Cyber Essentials and DMARC.

In our third article we consider the risks associated with money transfer fraud which in 2018 saw c.£11m of client money be compromised as a result of cyber fraud.

The national news continues to report on cases where law firms are infiltrated, bank details are altered and funds are redirected to criminal bank accounts. This happens when law firms are transferring funds between each other, and increasingly when remitting funds to clients.

While conveyancing is the highest risk area of law due to the amount of money that is being transferred in the course of a transaction, the risk is apparent where funds are being remitted to clients. This will include private client work like probate and family, and personal injury awards.

The advice from regulators it to have robust processes in place when remitting funds. There is no one size fits all solution and a combination of checks and balances must be in place.

In a survey undertaken by leading cyber risk management specialists Lawyer Checker just 6% of law firms adopted both the industry leading Account and Entity Screen law firm to law firm check alongside the law firm to client check, Consumer Bank Account Checker.

Account & Entity Screen provides lawyers with enhanced risk management when transferring funds by checking the account details of the solicitor you are sending funds to against Lawyer Checker’s unique database. The database determines whether the account you searched against has a track record of successful usage within conveyancing.

Consumer Bank Account Checker is not conveyancing specific and works by verifying the destination of the funds when it comes to transferring sale funds to customer bank accounts; adding a crucial step in your risk processes when it comes to remitting funds.

Start your cyber journey with Lawyer Checker today. Account & Entity Screen and Consumer Bank Account Checker can be used as part of your risk management processes when it comes to remitting funds.

For more information about our cyber risk products and services, and to find out about our packages, please contact us on 0800 133 7127.

 

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funds transfer fraud and Cyber Essentials