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Archive for ‘Technology: Office Technology’

Will the NSA Stop Wiretapping the Cloud?

Last week I wrote about the high cost of the NSA’s aggressive data-gathering efforts on US-based technology companies. These companies have lost billion-dollar contracts and suffered user exoduses as both corporations and individuals, especially those outside of the US, worry that the NSA has back-door access to their private data. Will these concerns be addressed by the reforms to the NSA announced by President Obama last week?

The Verge offers an in-depth analysis of Obama’s promised reforms with a scorecard measuring the effectiveness of those reforms against the recommendations of the Presidential review panel that were delivered late last year. . . . [more]

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

Ontario Privacy Commissioner Releases BYOD Policy Whitepaper

To provide guidance on organizational mobile development strategies, Ontario’s Information and Privacy Commissioner, Dr. Ann Cavoukian, along with TELUS, explore the options for workplaces in a new white paper, Bring Your Own Device: Is Your Organization Ready?
Posted in: Miscellaneous, Technology, Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

The High Cost of the NSA: Is Reform Coming?

The NSA has been causing technology providers of all stripes  on-premise hardware vendors, cloud application providers, traditional software vendors  no end of headaches as the Snowden revelations continue to pile up. As a recent article by security expert Bruce Schneier outlines, the scale and impact of the NSA surveillance machine is almost beyond comprehension.

Microsoft’s GC, Brad Smith, went so far as to characterize the NSA as an “advanced persistent threat,a industry term usually reserved to refer to sophisticated and malicious hackers backed by a foreign government. The cost to US technology providers of the NSA . . . [more]

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

Protecting Yourself From Cybercrime Dangers: Scrub Confidential Client Information on Discarded Equipment

Cybercrime dangers are many, complex and ever-changing. Hardly a day goes by without another news report of a data breach or other cyber-related scam or theft. Cyber criminals have considerable resources and expertise, and can cause significant damage to their targets. Cyber criminals specifically target law firms as law firms regularly have funds in their trust accounts and client data that is often very valuable. This article, from the December 2013 issue of LAWPRO Magazine, reviews the specific cybercrime dangers law firms need to be concerned about, and how they can mitigate their risks.

Many of the technology devices . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Office Technology

Protecting Yourself From Cybercrime Dangers: Stump Hackers by Changing Key Default Settings

Cybercrime dangers are many, complex and ever-changing. Hardly a day goes by without another news report of a data breach or other cyber-related scam or theft. Cyber criminals have considerable resources and expertise, and can cause significant damage to their targets. Cyber criminals specifically target law firms as law firms regularly have funds in their trust accounts and client data that is often very valuable. This article, from the December 2013 issue of LAWPRO Magazine, reviews the specific cybercrime dangers law firms need to be concerned about, and how they can mitigate their risks.

Changing the default settings for . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Office Technology

Protecting Yourself From Cybercrime Dangers: Keep the Bad Guys Out With a Firewall on Your Internet Connection

Cybercrime dangers are many, complex and ever-changing. Hardly a day goes by without another news report of a data breach or other cyber-related scam or theft. Cyber criminals have considerable resources and expertise, and can cause significant damage to their targets. Cyber criminals specifically target law firms as law firms regularly have funds in their trust accounts and client data that is often very valuable. This article, from the December 2013 issue of LAWPRO Magazine, reviews the specific cybercrime dangers law firms need to be concerned about, and how they can mitigate their risks.

When you are connected to . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Office Technology

A New Year’s ‘Resolution’ for Display Screens

There hasn’t been much reason to upgrade the screens we look at in recent years. Our consumer attention has been fixated on mobile technology, and there haven’t been any real “game changing” reasons to upgrade the screens for our fixed location devices. On average, the monitors we use at work, or the ‘big screen’ TV in our homes, haven’t been upgraded in quite some time.

In 2014, however, we may finally have reason to upgrade these fixed location screens. New ultra-HD, or ‘4K’ resolution displays, may make the upgrade decision worth revisiting. Resolutions on these devices are quadruple what most . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Office Technology

Thank Goodness for the NSA! — a Fable

If it weren’t for the U.S. National Security Agency’s trying to spy on everyone in the world, Bleeker Street Law would have been a cooked goose.

Back in 2013, we had a group of clients from a particular country applying for refugee status here in Canada. Because the NSA spying was in the news, we did a forensic audit of our computers, just to be safe. We promptly discovered that we had been hacked. Not by our clients’ former national security service, or by the NSA, but by a for-profit organization. A set of aspiring criminals had broken our security . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Office Technology

Bare Minimum Tech Standards for Lawyers

I am dealing with an older lawyer who told me that he won’t be able to review my 3 page agreement until January 6, 2014 because his staff will be gone for the holidays and he needs staff to help him with technology – in this case, with blacklining my agreement, which would be tough since I sent the agreement to him in pdf format. I suggested that he make his comments in pen on the document and then fax it back to me. He did manage to do that.

This is not the first time that I have come . . . [more]

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

CryptoLocker Malware Warning

The Law Society of British Columbia has published a warning to members concerning a species of malware known as CryptoLocker Ransomware. The malware, thought to originate in Eastern Europe or Russia, infects your machine in the usual way, e.g. when you open a dodgy email attachment or other file; but then it proceeds to encrypt most of the files on your computer, eventually denying you access. The malware operators then contact you with an offer to decrypt your files if you pay a certain amount of ransom—often demanded in untraceable Bitcoin. Payment can result in the release of your encrypted . . . [more]

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

Electronic Evidence: Spreadsheets Are Not Expert Evidence

In a recent civil case, the British Columbia Supreme Court had to decide on the admissibility in evidence of a database of transactions under a contract, and the results of SQL analysis of the database that produced a number of Excel format spreadsheets. The people who generated the spreadsheets were available to testify in person about how they had run the queries: Animal Welfare International Inc. v. W3 International Media Ltd., 2013 BCSC 2193 (CanLII).

The opposing party submitted that the analysis done in extracting the data constituted expert evidence, and the witnesses needed to be qualified as experts . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Technology: Office Technology, ulc_ecomm_list

Draft Practice Standards on Timekeeping and Law Firm Data: Nova Scotia

The Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society is currently seeking input from lawyers on two proposed new practice standards. The draft standards, proposed by the Law Office Management Committee, relate to lawyers’ responsibilities in the areas of timekeeping and data maintenance:

TIMEKEEPING
1. A lawyer’s accounts must be fair, reasonable and lawful.

a) The assessment and reasonableness of a lawyer’s account will depend on many factors, of one which is the time and effort “required and spent”.

MAINTENANCE AND BACKUP OF ELECTRONIC DATA

Lawyers must ensure there is a system in place for the maintenance, backup, and access of all electronic data.

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