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Fake lawyer websites on the rise: consumers and legal profession at risk


Fake law firms are not new, but legal consumers' reliance on - and trust in - the internet is causing a proliferation of fake lawyer websites. Website scams employ tactics that may include identity theft and brand hijacking of legitimate lawyers and firms.

Civil and legal issues regarding the public funding of legal services raise timely questions as to whether some of the most vulnerable seekers of legal services will increasingly go online to find affordable legal assistance, increasing their risk of falling prey to fake lawyers.

This paper examines several examples of how fake lawyers create fraudulent websites, the risks to consumers and law firms, as well as some factors that help to mitigate risks to legal professionals and legal consumers.

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