Fraud Alert: October 22, 2020

Trojan virus attacks BC law firm

October 22, 2020

Recently, a BC law firm was hit with a sophisticated Trojan horse virus as a result of a weak password and an inadequate firewall. The virus has allowed the fraudsters to gain access to the firm’s banking and client information, and it has caused emails to be sent to people on the firm’s contact list. These emails can appear as though they originate from the law firm itself, another law firm on the firm’s contact list, the court registry or even the Crown Prosecutor’s office. Nothing on the face of the email looks out of the ordinary except that the email includes an attachment or, in some cases, a zip file to be clicked on and downloaded.

Whatever you do, think before you click.

To protect yourselves and your law firm, be on alert and remind all lawyers and staff to take the following precautions:

  • Always think before you click.
  • Never open a link or attachment in an email or text message from anyone you do not know.
  • If you receive a link or attachment that you were not expecting – even if it is from someone you know – call the sender using the telephone number you have on file (not the number listed in the message) to confirm the message is legitimate.
  • If you open a link or attachment that you should have avoided, and a box opens that asks for your password or other information, stop. Close out. Immediately call your IT department to run a scan on your device(s) and inform your other law firm staff immediately.
  • Avoid public Wi-Fi, and do not use unsecured Wi-Fi to connect to your work server to do any banking, or to send any confidential or personal information.
  • Avoid working in public spaces where third parties may view screens or printed documents.

Learn about the 10 simple steps you can take to protect your system against a data breach here and talk to your IT professional.

Be sure to talk to your insurance broker about buying comprehensive cyber insurance. For information about managing this risk and more, click here.

If you suspect you have encountered a fraud, contact Barbara Buchanan, QC, Practice Advisor, Conduct and Ethics, at 604.697.5816 or