These are classed as ‘cyber-dependent’ crimes. Ransomware can lock out a business from its own data and computer systems, which criminals will then unlock for a fee.

Detective chief inspector Andrew Fyfe of the City of London Police also warned of ‘software developed to pay out [funds] to external bank accounts’. 

Crucially, this is not reliant on staff or fee-earners falling for well-publicised scams such as ‘Friday afternoon fraud’.

On a positive note, Fyfe believes law enforcement is ‘now effective’ in responding to cyber-dependent crimes and urged firms to report any suspected breaches they uncover.

Simon McCrum, former managing partner of law firm Darbys and now managing director of consultancy McCrum & Co, described a successful cyber-attack as ‘a form of instant death’ that ‘kept managing partners awake at night’.

Supporting solicitors: Law Management Section

The Law Society’s Law Management Section provides solicitors with support, advice and networking opportunities, and facilitates the sharing of best practice with peers.

The current Section Engagement Programme has been created in consultation with the Section Committee and will focus on key issues, including:

  • Practice management
  • Talent management
  • Financial management
  • Staffing models
  • IT
  • Client focus
  • Cyber security

These issues are addressed through a range of activities, including: webinars, magazines, regional forums, seminars, a conference, website, e-newsletters and a LinkedIn group.

Go to for more details.