With the advent of AI technology, businesses have started to recognize its almost limitless potential for streamlining, automating and minimizing tasks that were often seen as cumbersome and time consuming. Activities such as crafting an email, can now be accomplished in mere seconds with the evolution of AI writing tools. This represents just one small instance of the myriad advancements AI technology has introduced.
One iteration of AI has permeated the realm of vocal recognition. Speaker recognition, or voice recognition, denotes a program’s capacity to discern an individual based on their distinctive voiceprint. This cutting-edge technology is rapidly expanding, with developers continually unearthing novel applications across diverse domains (RecFaces, 2023).
Regrettably, the development of voice recognition has seen a rise in persons harnessing this technology for less scrupulous purposes. AI voice scams are utilizing cloning tools to emulate an individual whose voice is well known to the victim of the scam. . Incidents of voice recognition scams have become increasingly prevalent, with victims receiving calls purportedly from their superiors, coercing them into acquiring company gift cards or posing as government entities like the IRS, demanding immediate payments. In more egregious scenarios, faux “tech support” calls manipulate individuals into granting remote access to their devices. McAfee surveyed 7,054 people from seven countries and found that a quarter of adults had previously experienced some kind of AI voice scam, with 1 in 10 targeted personally and 15% saying it happened to someone they know. 77% of victims said they had lost money as a result. (Press Release | McAfee, n.d.)
Unwary firms risk succumbing to voice recognition scams, jeopardizing both client information and the integrity of their legal practices. This article seeks to delineate 5 strategies to fortify your defenses against these perils.
1)Exercise Caution with Urgent Requests
Individuals are more susceptible to impulsive decisions driven by emotion when faced with urgent demands from authoritative figures. Scammers exploit this vulnerability. In the Study conducted by McAfee, Nearly half (45%) of the respondents said they would reply to a voicemail or voice note purporting to be from a friend or loved one in need of money, particularly if they thought the request had come from their partner or spouse (40%). (Press Release | McAfee, n.d.). If you receive a call or voicemail, always verify the caller’s identity and reach out through trusted communication channels.
2) Safeguard Personal Information
Under no circumstances divulge personal information such as social security numbers, bank details, or passwords over the phone unless you can unequivocally confirm the caller’s identity, especially if you did not initiate the call. Customer data like bank account details that have been stolen by hackers — and are widely available on underground markets — help scammers pull off these attacks. (Flitter & Cowley, 2023). The more information these hackers have the more likely they will be able to fool you. They collect information on their victim and then ring in to banks, firms, etc. pretending like they are the person they are trying to be. Be cautious on who you’re giving your information to even outside of phone calls.
3)Invest in Authentication Protection
Implement an authentication system that sends a code to a verified phone number or email, ensuring the legitimacy of urgent calls from colleagues or superiors. Even the implementation of a code word within the firm may help establish a way to identify co-workers in the arisal of a suspicious call. These precautions may seem overbearing but the cost of falling for an AI voice scam can be significant, with more than a third of people who’d lost money saying it had cost them over $1,000, while 7% were duped out of between $5,000 and $15,000. (Press Release | McAfee, n.d.)
4)Exercise Caution on Social Media
While leveraging platforms like TikTok or Instagram for business promotion is trendy, be mindful of the risks. Voice recognition scams exploit shared videos, potentially compromising employees’ voices. According to (Press Release | McAfee, n.d.) with 53% of adults sharing their voice data online at least once a week (via social media, voice notes, and more.) and 49% doing so up to 10 times a week, cloning how somebody sounds is now a powerful tool in the arsenal of a cybercriminal. Finding audio samples for everyday customers can also be as easy as conducting an online search — say, on social media apps like TikTok and Instagram — for the name of someone whose bank account information the scammers already have (Flitter & Cowley, 2023). Make sure the people you follow are people who can be trusted. Many firm social medias are open to the general public making it even harder to control who has access to your content.
5)Provide Training and Updates to Firm Members
Empower your staff with the knowledge to identify and handle suspicious situations. Regular updates via email will keep clients and employees informed about prevailing AI-related scams, reinforcing their confidence in your commitment to their welfare.
6)Seriously Consider in Investing in a Cybersecurity Insurance Policy
Sadly. and despite our best efforts, malicious infiltrations remain a very real risk. Law firms and lawyers are obligated to keep current with technological trends in order to adequately protect their clients and their clients’ data and personal identification information. Having a cybersecurity policy in effect, not only protects your firm financially, but ensures that your firm has a comprehensive response plan to mitigate any such incidents. Simply put, a cybersecurity policy is the ultimate safeguard.
3G Insurance specializes in guiding law firms on coverage options to shield against the fallout of employee involvement on all cybersecurity risks, including Voice AI scams. Call Marty or Cathy at (813) 559-8010, or email us: Marty@floridalegalliability.com, Cathy@floridalegalliability.com
Catherine Agacinski, a Board-Certified Workers Compensation Attorney and Licensed Insurance Agent, together with her father Marty Agacinski, leads 3 Generations Insurance Agency. This boutique agency specializes in Legal Liability and Cyber Insurance for law firms, providing essential analysis of existing coverage, offering competitive quotes, and addressing cybersecurity needs. With over 40 years of licensure in multiple states, Marty Agacinski brings unparalleled expertise to the insurance realm. Connect with 3 Generations Insurance for invaluable assistance in fortifying your cybersecurity defenses.
1.Weitzman, C. (2023, June 19). How to Protect yourself from AI voice Scams 🚀 Speechify. Speechify.
2.RecFaces. (2023, June 13). What is voice recognition? How it works & what it’s used for.