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First member firms achieve Conveyancing Association’s Cyber Safe Scheme accreditation

The Conveyancing Association (CA), the leading trade body for the conveyancing industry, has today announced that two firms, Blacks Solicitors and Shakespeare Martineau, have become the first CA members to sign-up to its Cyber Safe Scheme and achieve the required accreditation.

Both law firms were able to demonstrate they have the necessary processes in place to be certified under the Cyber Essentials Scheme for IT security – or its equivalent.

The CA’s Cyber Safe Scheme was launched earlier this year and was designed to support member firms and their clients in reducing their exposure to cyber-crime and fraud.

As a result of achieving this accreditation, both Blacks and Shakespeare Martineau can now display a ‘Cyber Safe’ logo on their websites and literature to give reassurance to customers they are taking the necessary steps to tackle the growing threat of fraud within the legal industry.

Paul Saunders Head of Residential Conveyancing at Shakespeare Martineau, commented:

“The threat of fraud is continually on our agenda and as a responsible law firm which carries out thousands of conveyancing transactions a year we continually review our processes. The Cyber Safe Protocol has brought additional and current practical advice direct from Government agencies and as such we were determined to implement it as quickly as possible.”

David Hodgson, Risk and Compliance Consultant at Blacks Direct, said:

“The latest ONS statistics reveal that, for the year ending March 2016, there were almost six million instances of fraud or computer misuse experienced by people over-16 in the UK. We all know that within the property purchase process, the threat to conveyancers and our clients from cyber criminals is huge, with large amounts of money having been stolen over the last couple of years.

“There is a need to be increasingly vigilant and to offer training to staff, and education to clients, on the potential dangers and how to avoid being scammed. This is why Blacks’ have gone through the Cyber Essentials Scheme and are proud to be one of the first CA firms to be ‘Cyber Safe’. This, alongside our recent PCI compliance success as a business, is a very positive step in the right direction and allows us to demonstrate our commitment to fighting cyber-crime and keeping our client’s data secure.”

Lloyd Davies, Director of Operations at The Conveyancing Association, added:

“The CA’s Cyberfraud and Fraud Protocol was the culmination of a number of months’ work, and the input of a large number of member firms, our Affiliate partners, lenders and expert consultants, and Government agencies. We recognised the growing number of attempts at fraudulent activity in the conveyancing process and wanted to provide our members with a set of standards which they could achieve in order to help them in the fight against such fraud. We are delighted to announce the accreditation of both Blacks and Shakespeare Martineau, with many other CA firms destined to follow in their footsteps over the coming months.”

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