Law

Ransomware, Cyber Attacks, and Phishing…Oh my

November 6, 2023 Posted by MBW

You may have read or heard about the computer outage that has knocked most of Kansas’ state courts offline for two weeks due to a “security incident.” Experts have said it was a ransomware attack and it has caused the legal system and the Courts to file motions the old-fashioned way—on paper.


​Law firms and offices in New York State have pushed going paperless over the last few decades as they have converted to E-Filing, but a cyber incident such as this may reinforce using paper for some. In Kansas, older attorneys are showing off their skills and teaching younger attorneys to use faxes and file with paper, according to Karla Whitaker, interim executive director of the Kansas Bar Association. “Kansas Court System down Nearly 2 Weeks in ‘security Incident’ That Has Hallmarks of Ransomware.” ABC News, ABC News Network, http://abcnews.go.com/…/kansas-court-system-2-weeks….

How can you protect your organization from ransomware and cyber attacks? Besides the obvious monitoring of your network by your IT experts and antivirus software, educating employees is key. Remind staff to never click on links in emails and suspicious attachments. Never, ever disclose personal information. Having regular conversations about cyber security helps keep the information fresh in everyone’s mind.

​Cyber attacks, ransomware, and phishing scams are not slowing down anytime soon, and the legal system is not immune. Since 2019, ransomware groups have targeted 18 state, city or municipal court systems, including one in Dallas, Texas, where some jury trials had to be cancelled. Staying in front of these attacks and having a proactive approach is the best defense.

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