Canadian law firms hacked
ANADIAN LAW FIRMS
are naive when it comes to
cyber security, a blind spot
that could cost millions in
lost clients and reputation,
not to mention the financial
hit of having computer for-
ensic work and upgrading done, says
a Canadian cyber security expert.
“It comes down to risking lawyer-
client confidentiality,” said Daniel
Tobok told The Lawyers Weekly
that in the past nine months or so
about 20 law firms have been victims
of cyber attacks, five of them hitting
major Canadian law firms.
And they were unlike usual attacks
which can deny service or take down
systems, he said.
“These were targeted attacks,”
Tobok explained. “Three had serious
levels of attack.”
Indeed, said Tobok, the attacks
might be fit for the script of Tom
Cruise’s next Mission Impossible film.
Of the attacks, Tobok said, two
(M&A) work while another had to do
with high-profile litigation.
“Confidential information is the
new currency crooks are after,” Tobok
said. “We have seen a 40 per cent rise
in the theft of intellectual property
since the 2008 recession.”
Digital Wyzdom’s website lists
many high-profile organizations as
past clients, including several Bay
Street law firms. LexisNexis Canada
Inc., the publisher of The Lawyers
Weekly, is also listed on the site as a
past client of Digital Wyzdom.
The Lawyers Weekly repeatedly
contacted all the firms listed on
Digital Wyzdom’s website as past clients for comment, only Gowling
Lafleur Henderson LLP and
McMillan LLP, which merged with
Lang Michener LLP earlier this year,
McMillans CEO Andrew Kent
Story by Jeremy Hainsworth Illustration by Bahar Nasirzadeh
said the firm earlier this year, was
While he said the firm’s security
precautions are confidential, “rest
assured we’re doing things along the
way to protect clients’ data.”
Added Gowlings Managing Partner
Lorne Segal: “That certainly did not
Segal said the establishment of
walls and barriers in the computer
system to protect client data is
Tobok says what was striking, if
not alarming, about the attacks was
the level of sophistication.
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