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Government Agencies, Other News

Another Data Security Breach

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February 28, 2023
go big and go home

Last month a second AmLaw 20 law firm reported a data security breach with confidential client files potentially compromised by the data breach of its 20-year-old Accellion FTA file transfer system.  This follows initial reports from January that just one AmLaw 20 firm had been hit.  The firms hit by the Accellion FTA hack were not alone. The ABA’s 2020 Legal Technology Survey Report shows: the number of firms experiencing a security breach increased over the prior year; 29% of respondents compared to 26% in 2019.

What these firms have unfortunately discovered is that small platforms can mean big risks in cybersecurity.  It’s hard to beat that “small company” feeling that can come from focused support for your unique needs. This could explain why firms stuck so long with an obsolete system.  But there is a better way. 

A small platform can mean big vulnerabilities:

Accellion launched its FTA file transfer system 20 years ago. While the company is still small (Dun & Bradstreet lists 2019 revenues as $29 million), it has provided systems to some major banks, law firms, and government agencies.  Most of these customers use the newer Accellion web system. But, at the time of the breach last December, there were still “approximately 300 FTA” clients, according to Accellion’s press release about the breach.  Accellion claims that “fewer than 100” were victims of the attack, and that “fewer than 25 appear to have suffered significant data theft” – though experts now question whether the impact was truly that limited.  In fact, those experts have been critical of how Accellion handled the attack, leaving out crucial information for IT staff who were often away for the Holiday.

UpGuard, a cybersecurity third-party risk analysis management company rates Accellion’s security posture as a “B,” giving it a score of 675 out of 950.  Since the attack, Accellion has announced the “end of life” for what it now calls the “legacy” FTA.

A big platform can mean big security, but also a big pond for small fish:

In contrast, Salesforce has over 150,000 customers and it’s the number one customer relationship management (CRM) company. It has a bigger market share than the next nine competitors combined.  More than 88% of the Fortune 100 use Salesforce. If you are in a corporate legal department or a major law firm you are probably already using it.  

Salesforce has invested heavily in cybersecurity. With a comprehensive online “Trust Center” and a “Chief Trust Officer” who leads a diverse team of “security trailblazers.”  Salesforce has taken great efforts to make certain that the Cloud is indeed safer than on-premises software for its customers.  Not surprisingly, UpGuard rates Salesforce’s cybersecurity as an “A,” with a near-perfect score of 931 out of 950 (note that rating easily beats AmazonIBMMicrosoft, and the two big law firms that they have listed).

Salesforce is more than just an application, it is an entire platform.  There are thousands of partners building applications based upon Salesforce.  Salesforce corporate revenue projections for 2021 are over $21 billion.  It’s easy to feel lost and wonder if your unique needs will go unnoticed.  But, there is a way to leverage the unparalleled security of Salesforce and still feel right at home.

Small company + big platform = the best of both worlds:

AdvoLogix has been a Salesforce partner for twelve years. We built our case and matter management application upon the Salesforce platform.  We give you the benefits and features that come from our experience in working with corporate legal departments. We’ve been helping leading law firms for over a decade and a half.  You gain the benefit of service that our testimonials call “amazing” while knowing that your clients’ confidential data will be secure on the Salesforce platform.  That helps you feel right at home.

If you are ready to go big AND go home, give us a call!

Learn more about cloud-based matter management here.

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