With growth in digital data has come a growth in data breaches. The need for greater protection means you need a data breach attorney.
Data breaches aren’t restricted to hackers gaining access to your electronic data. It can also apply to people gaining access to printed materials.
Negligence may be to blame. Perhaps an employee lost a company laptop. A survey found that over 55% of data breaches were caused by employee negligence.
Or perhaps your data is at risk from deliberate attempts to break in. Cyber attacks can be both active and passive.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a company worried about protecting data, or an individual worried about how a data breach may affect you. It’s a good idea to consult a data breach attorney.
Read on to discover 8 reasons why you might call one.
1) A data breach attorney will grant you attorney-client privilege
In the instance you realize you’ve had a breach, you might think to turn to an IT specialist. And you’ll consult your IT providers about the problem.
While they’re experts on the IT side of things, they’re not legal experts. A data breach attorney understands the legal implications of a breach.
And as the law is still being developed in relation to cyberspace, you’ll need that attorney-client privilege.
They’ll be able to protect certain documentation from discovery during the legal process.
2) Attorneys can liaise with your insurance broker
Many businesses assume general liability insurance covers cyber problems. So you’re better off using a specialist broker to find the right cyber insurance for you.
If a security risk happens, a data breach attorney is better placed to deal with the insurer. They already know how to collect and collate the right information for a claim.
3) Attorneys help plan to protect information
Don’t wait until you’ve experienced a breach to consult a data breach attorney. Companies need to prepare ahead.
An attorney will be an invaluable resource while you devise a program to protect personal or confidential information.
Prevention is better than cure and an attorney will help you to put that system in place.
It will cost less in the long run to pay an attorney to set up the system. Paying damages after a breach will be far more expensive.
The average cost of a data breach has risen to $4 million per incident.
Damage to your reputation will be far more costly.
4) Keep an attorney on retainer to manage the process for you
As well as setting up systems to protect the information you hold, data breach attorneys are part of an ecosystem that includes other aspects of information security.
In the event of a data breach, they can hire the firms you’ll need, including information security, computer forensics, PR and crisis management.
It is up to them to analyze the attack and decide on a plan of action. Having an attorney you trust before you need to hire one will speed up the process of dealing with a breach.
Without an attorney, any reports produced by those firms could be turned over to the prosecution during a lawsuit. With an attorney, they’re protected by attorney-client privilege, as we explained in point 1.
5) You need a point of contact for the media
You cannot afford to pretend that nothing is wrong. And it’s better to be a part of the conversation than it is to try and ignore it.
That way you can control the story and how your customers perceive the breach.
But a data breach attorney will help to mediate between your company and the media. The fact that you have an attorney at all will help to legitimate your handling of the breach.
You’ll need to hire an attorney that can explain the legal complexities in simple English. It’s part of our mission to do exactly that.
Though hiring a data breach attorney doesn’t just apply to companies who have been breached. You may also need to consult one as a customer of a breached company.
6) Attorneys can determine if you have a case
A data breach attorney will work to determine if the company you were dealing with was negligent. If they didn’t follow certain procedures, then they might be liable.
Attorneys will also review the company’s documentation to decide if they violated their own policies.
And they’ll work at the level of state law. Data breach regulations vary from state to state and an attorney will know what applies to your case.
7) Attorneys can protect you against identity theft
You’ll probably worry about identify theft if you’ve been the victim of a data breach. Your first job is to find out what information has been exposed.
If your credit card number was discovered, it is relatively simple to order a new card. Thieves won’t be able to use the old number for fraudulent purchases.
But what if your Social Security number was accessed? You can add a fraud alert with credit bureaus to highlight the fact.
Check your credit report regularly and monitor any accounts opened in your name. If you see anything you don’t recognize, consult a data breach attorney.
It can be difficult to trust companies given the stories in the press about high-profile data breaches. In 2016, Yahoo discovered that over 1 billion user accounts were compromised in August 2013.
Users were advised to reset their passwords when the breach was discovered, but 3 years had passed since the breach occurred.
Who knows what happened to the data of affected users in that time?
8) You’re worried about your child’s accounts online
Companies might offer to monitor your credit reports if your personal information is accessed during a breach.
But they may not offer the same protection if your child’s account is compromised. If you consult an internet attorney, you can find out what you need to do to protect your child’s data.
You might even consult the attorney before you open any accounts to learn about the state and federal laws that regulate how companies handle sensitive information.
If you have old accounts, even ones that have been closed, then you might want to consult an attorney. They can advise you how to ensure that your records cannot be used for identity theft.
It doesn’t matter which side of the breach you’re on. Whether you’re the company that’s been attacked or the consumer whose data is accessed, you can benefit from consulting a specialist.