Issue 64 - November 2017
Foreword from our Chief ExecutiveWelcome to the latest issue of SRA Update. The new legal and practising years have started, so things continue to be really busy. As you will read, we have some work to do over the money laundering regulations that were introduced in June, while we have formalised proposals for dealing with the European Insurance Distribution Directive and have asked for your views on our proposed way forward. We also want your views on our proposals to change the way we regulate and for making better information available to the public. Keeping you and your firm safe featured at our recent Compliance Officer Conference and we have more on that and scams, as well as links to our recent thematic review of diversity in firms.
The new money-laundering regulations introduced by the Government in June placed new duties and tasks on you as solicitors and us as your regulator. One of those tasks involves collecting more in-depth information about you and your firm, and those that handle client money.
We have been asking for your views on our proposed plans for dealing with the new European Insurance Distribution Directive. This comes into effect in February next year and replaces the Insurance Mediation Directive. It aims to strengthen protections in place for clients, such as improving the information they receive.
Six times as many women may be entering the profession when compared to 1970. Yet white males are almost three times as likely to become a partner in a large corporate firm than white females. And six times more likely than BAME females. We talked to firms about what they do to support diversity and have published a review highlighting examples of how you can make your firm more diverse and inclusive, and how it can benefit your business.
We have published our latest "Looking to the future" proposals, which will further cut unnecessary bureaucracy so you can focus more on growing your business. We are consulting on our second phase of plans to create an even simpler, clearer handbook that puts the onus on high standards and trusting your professional judgment.
Should we create adigital logo to better explain what protections people get using a regulated firm?Should firms publish information on prices and services for certain types ofwork? We are consulting on improving the information available to help thepublic make better legal choices. It could also create new opportunities foryou to find new clients. We want to hear your views.
Our fifth conference just for compliance officers took place last month. Record numbers came along, with more than 1,000 people attending. Topics covered ranged from cybercrime to GDPR, anti-money laundering to the SQE. Videos of each session are available on our website, where you can also download copies of the presentation materials used on the day.
We have had further reports of firms being contacted through the Law Society's Find a Solicitor site by con artists pretending to want legal help but who in fact are attempting to corrupt IT systems. Their requests carry attachments that claim to have further details, but in fact contain viruses that threaten your computer networks.
Want to know the high-risk scams that could affect your business? Our new round-up brings together the latest risks and advice on how to help keep your firm safe.
Cybercrime is the fastest-growing crime in the country, accounting for more than 75 percent of all reports to the police. Law firms, handling large amounts of client money, are prime targets for such criminals. Are you doing all that you can to minimise the risk of your firm getting caught out?
Action Fraud has launched a new 24/7 reporting service for organisations suffering live cyberattacks. A live attack is one that is ongoing, that is still affecting your system and your ability to work, and there is an opportunity for law enforcement to stop the attack and/or secure evidence that will assist an investigation. Their advisors are waiting to take your call 24 hours a day, seven days a week, on 0300 123 2040.
Are you worried about your health affecting your work? We recognise that life as a solicitor can be challenging. The demands and pressures can easily build and make you feel like things are getting on top of you. We can signpost you to sources of help and make adjustments for you if you are in difficulty.
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