Council reports 2016

Council Meeting 28 October 2016

Cybercrime

The solicitors’ profession has a leading role to play in tackling cybercrime, the Council heard.

Mandy Haeburn-Little, Chief Executive of the Scottish Business Resilience Centre, and Detective Inspector Eamonn Keane, of Police Scotland, gave a presentation on how business and organisations can protect themselves against cybercrime.

The presentation followed the Society’s technology conference earlier in the week and also the publication of research by the Society that identified cyber security as one of the biggest issues facing solicitors.

However, the Council heard that, as advisers to many of the 360,000 small and medium sized enterprises in Scotland, solicitors could help to raise awareness of the risks.

Around 80% of the threats from cybercrime could be mitigated by some simple settings to businesses’ information technology systems, Council members were told.

More training for businesses and their staff would also help prevent cybercrime, it was added.

Issues raised by Council members in a wide-ranging discussion that followed the presentation included protecting customer data from attacks, the reluctance of some businesses to report cybercrime incidents to the police and the security settings needed for mobile devices.

Paralegals

The Society’s registered paralegal status is to be renamed, the Council decided.

The new name, accredited paralegal, was considered more appropriate for the high-level qualification, which is based on an extensive competency framework and has strict entrance criteria. Also, the Society is accrediting those who hold the status rather than simply registering them.

The Council heard that a major part of the Society’s new strategy is to grow its membership. The registered paralegal status is a category of quasi-membership that predates the Society’s new strategy. 

The Society discussed the name change with existing registered paralegals, who supported the move.