In its 2018 Client Advisory, Hildebrandt Consulting LLC, shared insights and trends we’ve come to expect from this leading monitor of the legal market. For example, the report says that while revenues grew in the legal market, that was due in part to increased fees in the face of declining demand.

It’s important to consider . . .  the sectors in which the firm does business.”

The Advisory also discussed cybersecurity, something firms must pay attention to since they are a sweet, sweet target for hackers and for good reason when you consider all the intellectual property, deal documents, evidence, and other juicy info that rests on law firm servers.  The report said firms need to determine their own “unique risk profile.” They say it’s important for firms to know who has access to sensitive data, whether employees use mobile devices for work, who is in charge of IT security and the business sectors in which the firm advises clients.  “Understanding the unique risks of the firm is crucial to tailoring an effective security plan.” Hildebrandt encourages firms to “master the fundamentals” of cybersecurity. “Hackers often take the path of least resistance when it comes to targeting law firms. While many firms may not have the resources to implement state-of-the-art security, most firms can implement some fundamental security measures that will deter many would-be attackers. The specifics of these fundamental measures will vary depending on the size, culture, risk profile, and client base of the firm, but are likely to include things such as changing passwords on a regular basis, updating software, and training employees to avoid email scams.”

Artificial intelligence and emerging technologies are expected to play an increasing role at law firms. In fact, they will ” help reshape the law firm industry,” Hildebrandt predicts.  “We believe that the firms who harness the emerging technologies and who focus on protecting their clients and themselves from cybersecurity breaches will be even stronger in the future. While there are those who suggest that law firms cannot adapt to the shifting demands of clients and the changing competitive environment, we take a different view. We believe that law firms have historically been resilient in the face of changing market conditions and while change has come slowly, the law firm of 20 years ago bears little resemblance to the law firm of today.”

You can download the full report HERE.

Among the contributors to the Advisory were Daniel Garrie, who recently joined the faculty of our Cyber Sector Risk event on Critical Infrastructure.