On April 11, 2019, the Inaugural Cyber Seminar was held in Dallas at the Akin Gump law firm. Approximately 70 data privacy and information security professionals were in attendance.
Results from a survey of 58 law firms that have offices in Dallas, Houston and Austin were presented. The survey instrument was developed by The Texas Lawbook and the corporate counsel at more than a half dozen Texas companies, including American Airlines, AT&T, Conduent and Masergy. It was reported that 42 out of the 49 business law firms surveyed had suffered a cyberattack in 2017 and 2018. The Texas Lawbook also reported that vendors from 44 of those law firms had experienced significant data breaches.
The panel moderator was John Ansbach, a former general counsel at General Datatech. John Ansbach is currently an Executive for Aon Security Solutions. Locke Lord attorney and Director of Security, Andy Sawyer spoke about the fact that law firms are high value targets because of the large amounts of valuable client information they possess. Michele Reed, a cybersecurity expert and Akin Gump partner pointed out that while many law firms have cyber-response plans in place, very few law firms actually test their programs or have sufficient accountability and oversight over their cybersecurity programs.