At a time when cyberattacks are on the rise, Australian firm Corrs Chambers Westgarth has launched a multidisciplinary cybersecurity practice.
The firm has hired Phillip Magness , a forensic information technology expert, from the Australian Federal Police—the country’s equivalent of the FBI—as a national forensic technology manager. Magness will help gather forensic evidence and assist lawyers attempting to understand and prove wrongdoing.
Corrs also recruited IT specialist Georg Thomas as a national security and risk manager. Thomas joined the firm from the global advisory firm Grant Thornton in New York, where he advised clients on cybersecurity risk and helped them conduct hacker tests. Thomas is a c ertified ethical hacker , a certification issued by Albuquerque, New Mexico-based professional organization the International Council of Electronic Commerce Consultants .
Corrs said Magness and Thomas would team up with the firm’s legal cybersecurity team to help businesses both prepare for and recover from a cyberattack. The offering includes finding the source of the breach, learning how it occurred, providing a legal response, managing and protecting the organization’s reputation, and advising on preventive steps needed to minimize the risk of repeated instances.
The new practice, dubbed Corrs Cyber, is overseen by Sydney-based litigation partner James Whittaker. Partners James North, Simon Johnson and Michael do Rozario in Sydney, Philip Catania in Melbourne, Helen Clarke in Brisbane and David Yates in Perth all advise on cybersecurity-related matters.
Corrs’ launch of a cybersecurity group came following a recent attack on DLA Piper when the firm’s global network of phones and computers were shut down after being hit by ransomware. The DLA Piper attack itself occurred only weeks after a worldwide outbreak of attacks by ransomware WannaCry and its variations.