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11/6/2017
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Majority of Legal Departments Play Heavy Role in Data Security Risks Response

Survey explores general counsels' views on regulatory risk management and risk assessments to cybersecurity and data analytics.

Successful organizations understand that risk management is not just a compliance exercise but an opportunity to gain a competitive advantage. More than ever, legal departments are playing a significant role in managing risk and monitoring its effectiveness, especially in the critical area of cybersecurity.

Grant Thornton and Corporate Counsel magazine recently surveyed over 190 corporate general counsel to assess their views on the keys to business growth. The topics ranged from regulatory risk management and risk assessments to cybersecurity and data analytics. Below are a sampling of insights from Grant Thornton’s 2017 Corporate General Counsel Survey:

  • 58% of legal departments are highly involved in responding to data security risks; nearly a quarter have primary responsibility for the issue
  • Less than a quarter of counsel are very satisfied with their organizaton’s risk assessment
  • Nearly three-quarters of legal departments cite cyber issues as a top risk.
  • Of those very concerned about data security, only about a third feel adequately prepared


As a result of increasing risk concerns, the role of the corporate general counsel continues to evolve to include new, important areas of focus and responsibilities.  While maintaining a firm handle on the traditional functions of the legal department, the survey reveals that their role is increasingly concerned with regulation and compliance, as well as data privacy and related cybersecurity issues. 

Download Grant Thornton’s 2017 Corporate General Counsel Survey report to gain more insights

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