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Archive for ‘Technology: Office Technology’

The Cost of Free WiFi

There were cheers (ok, it was me) at a recent technology budget planning meeting at our office when it was announced that we are increasing WiFi throughout our space in another of our offices. In that office, up to now we have provided wifi for the area that includes anywhere a client would be. Our estimate for this is $4500. The WiFi we provide in our offices is secured with a password and uses a different internet connection than our network. Risk = reasonable.

There is an interesting article in the American Bar Associations YourABA December 2011 issue called Public . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Office Technology

Secure Your Dropbox Data With SecretSync

Dropbox has suffered through a number of security- and privacy-related incidents over the past year, which has left its frustrated but loyal userbase asking how they can continue using Dropbox while still properly securing their data.

SecretSync, a new startup, hopes to be the answer to that question. SecretSync encrypts sensitive data that you place in Dropbox so that, in the event Dropbox releases your files to law enforcement agencies or inadvertently makes your data public, you have nothing to worry about: your data will be completely inscrutable thanks to the client-side encryption used by SecretSync. Because your . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology, Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

North Carolina Revisits Cloud Computing Ethics Opinion

The North Carolina State Bar has revisited its proposed Formal Ethics Opinion (FEO) on cloud computing and addressed many of the concerns the legal cloud computing community had previously expressed.

The main point of concern with the previous opinion was a list of minimum mandatory requirements that an attorney had to ensure was met by their cloud computing provider. In an open letter to the NC State Bar, the Legal Cloud Computing Association outlined its concerns with the proposed FEO; prominent bloggers such as Carolyn Elefant, Stephanie Kimbro, Erik Mazzone and Niki Black also outlined their concerns about . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Technology, Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

Securing Your Apple Devices

Last week I gave a talk at Victor Medina’s excellent MILOfest conference about How to Secure Your Mac Law Firm. In preparing for the talk, I developed the following set of best practices that any lawyer using Apple devices should employ to help protect their law firm’s data:

Securing Your Desktops/Laptops

  • Upgrade to OS X Lion and enable FileVault 2 for full disk encryption. Read more about FileVault 2 and Lion here.
  • Enable the off-by-default firewall.
  • Set your screen saver / lock screen to activate after 5 or fewer minutes of activity.
  • Disable automatic login.
  • Enable Find my Mac
. . . [more]
Posted in: Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

LexisNexis PCLaw Practice Suite

At yesterday’s 5th Annual Federation of Asian Canadian Lawyers (FACL) Conference, Avvy Go and Julian Falconer spoke about mentorship and noted that large firms presumptively have resources that small and solo firms do not.

The future of legal practice management will invariably lie in technological solutions to strategic problems, especially for those with limited resources. I had a private tour earlier this week of the new LexisNexis product launched in Ontario, PCLaw Practice Suite, intended primarily for firms with 1 to 5 lawyers. The platform was developed after years of research and communication with small practitioners to assess . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Practice Management, Technology: Office Technology

A Step Closer to Killing the Fax Machine

Even in 2011, I receive a surprisingly large number of documents that require me to print them, sign them, and fax them back to the sender. Ironically, most of these documents are sent to me as PDF attachments to e-mails.

We’ve banned physical fax machines at Clio, and instead use RingCentral for sending an receiving faxes. My workflow below helps me avoid having to print and scan documents that require completion and signing:

  1. Download the PDF document
  2. Open in Adobe Acrobat Professional
  3. Use the “typewriter” tool to complete form fields
  4. Open a separate PDF file where I’ve signed my name
. . . [more]
Posted in: Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

Inmagic’s Special Library Products and InMagic Brand Purchased by SydneyPLUS

No doubt many libraries in our community have already heard the news: SydneyPLUS has just purchased a big piece of the Inmagic pie. This includes Inmagic’s DB/Text Library Suite of products: DB/TextWorks, DB/Text WebPublisher Pro, and Inmagic Genie.

According to Kathy Bryce via Andornot’s blog:

The move will strengthen both SydneyPLUS and the new Inmagic division by bringing together complementary technologies to meet the needs of special librarians, while allowing Inmagic, Inc. to focus on new markets.

Inmagic, Inc. (the company) will retain its Presto technology and its related products PrestoKnowledgeNetPresto AssociatioNet, . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Information Management, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Technology: Office Technology

RIM: Is Amateur Hour Over?

Last week the most severe outage in RIM’s history crippled BlackBerry users’ abilities to use e-mail, BBM, and the Internet in general for over three days.

The outage highlighted two deeply concerning issues with RIM. First, it is almost beyond comprehension how a single point of failure could bring RIM’s global network down for this period of time. In the face of fierce competition from Apple and Google, RIM had been able to depend on real-time and reliable e-mail delivery as one of its key competitive differentiators. Not any more.

Worse, the company’s response has come across as arrogant, aloof, . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

BC Privacy Commissioner Releases Guidelines for Social Media Background Checks

The OIPC BC released Guidelines for Social Media Background Checks yesterday. The Guidelines were developed “to help organizations and public bodies navigate social media background checks and privacy laws.”

The Guidelines outline the privacy risks associated with the use of social media to screen and monitor current and prospective employees, volunteers and candidates, including:

The collection of potentially inaccurate personal information;

The collection of too much or irrelevant personal information;

The inadvertent collection of third-party personal information; and

The overreliance on consent for the collection of personal information that may not be reasonable in the circumstances.

The Guidelines also provide . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Reading: Recommended, Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology: Office Technology

Screening & Confidentiality v. Knowledge Sharing

This morning’s Intapp Law Firm Risk Management Blog features a piece I recently published in Managing Partner Magazine in London entitled: “Managing Screens,” which explores the tension between tightly controlling access to sensitive client (and firm) information and fostering internal sharing, which I characterize as: “the potential of exploiting collective professional knowledge.”

“What has changed is that, in the past decade, so-called ethical screens have proliferated within law firms. Ethical screens are what used to be called Chinese walls: institutional mechanisms combined with technological safeguards and personal undertakings which ensure that confidential information is tightly protected.”

. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Technology: Office Technology

Steve Jobs (1955 – 2011)

We mourn the passing of Steve Jobs, whose singular achievements are recounted by the HuffPost, MTV on his impact on music, Washington Post , Wired and the Daily Telegraph.

For the legal community, the perspective is slightly different. Jobs contributed to a host of patents reviewed here. Law firms toyed with Apple computers for a while in the 1980s, but currently the only firms that are using that platform tend to be IP and media law firms who are following their clients – the creative community has always loved Apple machines. And of course there are . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

Computing in the Cloud

I’m new to the cloud, just having opened a Dropbox account a couple of weeks ago. Still even to a newbie like me its clear that cloud computing on a larger scale can raise many legal issues about privacy and security. As it turns out the potential new law and policy issues are many. To address these issues the Centre for Innovation Law and Policy at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law is hosting an all-day conference on Friday October 14 entitled Cloudlaw: Law and Policy in the Cloud. The conference will consider the issues that may arise . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology