Baton Rouge Cyber Contract Law & Incident Response Attorney

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Baton Rouge Cyber Contract Law & Incident Response Attorney

Data breaches and cyberattacks have become increasingly common in today’s digital age. In 2021, the construction industry was one of the most targeted industries for cyberattacks due to its fast-paced growth and digitization efforts. The federal government has caught onto this worrying trend and is now drafting more stringent requirements for its contractors as a result. To make sure your company is ready, speak with a Baton Rouge cyber contract law & incident response attorney.

Creative Solutions for Pressing Cyber-Related Contract Law Issues

Dunlap Fiore, LLC, has skilled attorneys with vast experience interpreting and drafting sophisticated, complex, cyber-related contractual provisions. A dedicated cyber contract law attorney from our firm can help you draft and implement critical documents, including cybersecurity and cyber insurance requirements, ensuring that your contracts comprehensively protect your cybersecurity interests.

If you have had a recent data breach, a dedicated cyber contract law attorney from our Baton Rouge-based firm can assist you with understanding your organization’s legal rights and obligations. At our firm, our legal team understands prevalent data breaches are across all industries, with such operations evolving in sophistication and scale.

Data breaches are not just possible—they’re inevitable. At Dunlap Fiore, LLC, our team has a proven record of representing clients who have lost significant amounts of money to data breaches caused by a cyber bad actor. Furthermore, we are deeply experienced in drafting cyber-related contractual provisions to prevent such losses in future cyberattacks.

Should I Be Concerned About a Data Breach?

Data breaches occur in every industry, but perpetrators especially target the construction industry. This industry has taken more time to advance into the digital era than others, leading to more opportunities for companies to be exploited via cyberattacks. The construction industry has experienced an array of digital attacks in recent years.

One of the most damaging forms of cyberattacks that has increased in recent years is called a business email compromise scheme, or a BEC scheme. Instead of trying to download malware on computers or hack into a database, scammers are now exploiting employees by posing as suppliers. They often adopt an email address that looks similar to one from a trusted supplier to trick these employees into transferring money to the wrong bank accounts.

Banks are typically unable to recover money lost in a BEC scheme. Both the contractor and the supplier become victims; one did not get paid and the other paid the wrong person. In litigation, to determine liability, courts will look to the company that was in the better position to identify the fraud and prevent the cyberattacks.

This means that, even if you are the victim of a cyberattack, you might still be considered blameworthy if you are the entity that was in the better position to identify and prevent the fraud.

Cyber-Related Contract Provisions

Cyber-related terms and phrases in a company’s contract documents can commonly be overlooked, leaving them vulnerable to a lack of protection after cyber breaches or attacks. By employing appropriate contract language, in addition to including relevant cyber insurance coverage requirements, companies can ensure that their rights and interests are protected in the wake of a cyber-attack.

Failing to have adequate requirements related to cyber protection can jeopardize a company by leaving it vulnerable to a lack of insurance protection after an attack. However, having excessive, unnecessary, and stringent cybersecurity requirements could make your contract requirements too expensive to achieve. A lawyer from our firm can help you strike a fine balance between thoroughness and efficiency when it comes to your cyber contracts.

With any contract written by a third-party, understanding terms prior to contract execution is critical. This is particularly true for terms including proactive cybersecurity requirements and response obligations in the event of a cyberattack, which are both expensive and time-consuming. Without proper understanding, companies can inadvertently execute a contract that creates significant undue financial burden. Prior to signing a contract with any cyber-related provisions, organizations must understand their rights and obligations under those terms.

Understanding contractual rights and obligations relating to cyber security and incident response is also important for companies that work on government contracts. Currently, the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) outlines the requirements that companies must meet to maintain data security. If[MC1] the government discovers that a company is not meeting FAR requirements, it can order that work be stopped, or payments be withheld, or it might even terminate the contract.

New Department of Defense Cybersecurity Certification Requirements

As digital trends change and advance, the Department of Defense has developed a stricter information security model called the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification, or CMMC, which is anticipated for implementation by 2025 for all government contracts involving controlled unclassified information. The CMMC will place an even greater emphasis and more requirements on cybersecurity among defense contractors.

The SEC has also begun cracking down on cybersecurity breaches, issuing large fines and sanctions against companies that do not have strong security measures in place. They have also recently added new reporting requirements for public companies.

If a company experiences a data breach that has some kind of material impact, they are now requiring this breach to be reported to the SEC. Paired with the Cyber Incident Reporting for Critical Infrastructure Act of 2022, or CIRCIA, these new regulations give companies significantly more work to do in the event of a data breach.

What Can a Cyber Law Attorney Help Me With?

While it might seem impossible to address challenges created in this digital world, a Cyber Law Attorney can help. Our experience can assist your company with matters like:

  • Contract review and drafting: The attorneys at Dunlap Fiore, LLC can help with both interpreting already drafted provisions and drafting your own requirements that make sense. We can clearly define exactly what insurance protection is required through a comprehensive cyber contract or cyber insurance policy.

    Equally important, we can help draft or interpret requirements of what is expected of each party if a cyberattack does occur, such as the timeframe for notification after an attack is discovered, responsibilities of each party in terms of corrective action, how financial responsibility for the response is determined, and so on.

  • Response to a cyberattack: Once your business has become a victim of a cyberattack, how you respond can have an enormous financial and reputational cost. The attorneys at Dunlap Fiore, LLC, should be part of your immediate response team to identify your rights and obligations, as well as the potential impact from a legal perspective. For instance, we can help you file a claim with your organization’s insurance company for damages.

    By allowing Dunlap Fiore, LLC, to be part of your immediate response team, you can ensure that your company remains compliant with its legal, contractual, and regulatory obligations throughout the breach response process.

  • Government Compliance: Businesses that work on government contracts must know which FAR requirements relating to cybersecurity apply to the project at issue and adhere to those specific requirements. Some defense contractors will soon have to adapt to the more stringent and more costly upcoming changes that the CMMC will bring.

    The attorneys at Dunlap Fiore, LLC, can offer assistance to ensure your construction company is in compliance with the applicable FAR requirements and that you enter into a reasonable cyber contract so that you are ready to bid on a government contract.

Our legal team can further support you with meeting upcoming requirements for certification from the Department of Defense for projects involving controlled unclassified information. A Baton Rouge cyber contract law & incident response attorney from our firm can help you if you have been a victim of a cyber scheme and have suffered damages or if you are entering into a cybersecurity or cyber insurance contract.

Experienced Attorneys for a Fast-Paced Digital World

Don’t let a poorly drafted contract put your company at risk of financial or reputational harm. Dunlap Fiore, LLC can help draft, interpret, and negotiate cyber-related contractual provisions, as well as interpret statutory requirements, for your next construction project.

If you are a victim of a cyberattack, Dunlap Fiore, LLC, can be part of your immediate response team to help make sure your company understands and is prepared for any potential legal compliance and liability issues. We can also provide the legal representation required for resulting litigation. For more information on how we can help, schedule a consultation with Dunlap Fiore, LLC.