Our Risk & Compliance consultants help law firms create value and a competitive advantage by embracing disruption with trust and confidence.
Successful law firms know that risk can come from every angle, including strategic, operational and regulatory, and can be hard to see, anticipate and respond to. Our team of Risk and Compliance consultants assists lawyers to embrace all potential risks, update their risk functions and share risk intelligence to generate fresh value through aggressive innovation that gives them a competitive advantage.
The cost of under-investment in risk and compliance is leading to an increasing number of cases of intervention by approved regulators. Keeping abreast of the rules and regulations and safeguarding your business and its reputation can take less investment than you think.
The interplay between strategic, operational and regulatory risk is important to understand in order for the partners to be able to make long-term decisions to prevent risk and minimise impacts on their firm’s ability to meet its future business strategy and objectives.
Anti-Money Laundering Experts
Issues with “Money Laundering” are at the top of our Risk & Compliance service list. As has been pointed out by the National Crime Agency, solicitors are on the frontline in the battle against money laundering. But far too many firms do not have the necessary systems in place to keep money launderers out of legal services. For example, some have not completed a basic risk assessment that should underpin a firm’s approach. This is not just poor practice – having a risk assessment is a legal requirement under 2017 government regulations. Compliance is essential and we urge you all to take the necessary steps and contact us for help and advice as quickly as possible.
Our Risk & Compliance consultants can help you and your firm to:
- understand what the risks are
- recognise how the risks apply to you and your business
- decide the actions you can take to mitigate against them
We will help you to understand and comply with money laundering obligations and provide advice and support for new money laundering reporting officers.
Our areas of expertise:
- Client money. Clients trust solicitors to look after their money. Keeping it safe is your responsibility.
- Information and cyber security. The information you hold is valuable. Cyberattacks remain a threat to your firm and your clients.
- Integrity and ethics. Every aspect of your firm's culture and practices should reflect the ethical standards of a solicitor.
- Investment schemes. Questionable investment schemes can have devastating consequences for their victims. You must not facilitate these.
- Managing claims. People who have suffered a loss are entitled to seek justice, but badly handled or fraudulent claims harm the public’s trust in the legal system.
- Standards of service. Those who do not meet the professional standards of behaviour and competence can affect people’s life, liberty and finances as well as public confidence in the rule of law.
Advantage Consulting can give you practical advice that you and your firm can easily apply. We will also signpost to the latest guidance to make sure you know what is expected of you. By putting in place the right controls at the right time, you can better manage the challenges you face. Where relevant, we will also give you details about potential changes we see on the horizon.
The legal sector is at significant and growing risk of cybercrime, cyber-attacks and scams, partly because of the sensitive data and significant monies held by law firms. The SRA recently reported over £11,000,000 of client money was stolen due to cybercrime. Last year, 60% of law firms reported an information security incident - almost a 20% increase from the previous 12 months.
Cybersecurity is a critical issue facing all law firms. Cybercrime is getting more sophisticated so it’s important to protect your firm’s information and systems. Every firm should have basic security checks in place to protect its critical assets from cybercrime. These assets will include:
- mobiles and smart devices
General Data Protection Regulations
Data must be processed securely to comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Data breaches must be reported to the Information Commissioner's Office within 72 hours of being discovered. Everyone in your firm should know how to do this.
We can assist you to consider “cloud” computing. This is where your data is stored on remote servers and accessed through the internet instead of your computer’s hard drive. These servers are managed by a third-party supplier, who’s also responsible for the security of the data it holds.
Certification helps you and your practice demonstrate expertise to your clients.
Our consultants can help you with:
- getting the National Cybersecurity Centre’s (NCSC) Cyber Essentials certification
- getting the Lexcel accreditation
- complying with ISO 27001, a standard for managing and protecting information assets
For more information on how we can help your law firm, please call us on 0121 212 6580 or request a free call-back using our Contact Form to get free initial advice.
You can also access a wealth of free business information for lawyers by visiting our digital Resource Centre and view our free Business Factsheets.
Alternatively, please email us on firstname.lastname@example.org.