Courts Up E-Filing Security To Shield Lawyers’ Personal Data

October 23, 2014 – In The News
New Jersey Law Journal

Scott L. Vernick was quoted in the New Jersey Law Journal article, “Courts Up E-Filing Security To Shield Lawyers’ Personal Data.” Full text can be found in the October 23, 2014, issue, but a synopsis is below.

Starting Nov. 5, the online portal attorneys use in New Jersey for their biannual registration and electronic filing of case documents in state court is getting a security upgrade. This new security protocol, which the courts have named “Step-Up Authentication,” will direct lawyers to a page where they will have to answer three security questions in order to log on.

Vernick said the current protocol is “a single-factor authentication system,” where the password acts as the sole barrier, given that attorney identification numbers are public.

Adding the security questions will provide “more robust protection,” Vernick said, because the result will be “multifactor authentication.”

“The bar should be encouraged that the [Administrative Office of the Courts] is taking appropriate steps to ensure the protection of personally identifiable information,” he noted.

“Nobody is immune,” Vernick added. It is not just banks and retailers that are at risk, “It’s an issue for everybody.”