Whenever we begin the conversation regarding cloud computing with a lawyer, often we hear the question ” Is the cloud safe for law firms?”. Quite simply, the answer is YES. Cloud is certainly the safest option for law firms to ensure data security; with secure encryptions in place, the cloud can protect them again data theft, data loss, malware attack, and so on.
Naturally, legal professionals are ready to make this one-time hefty investment to set up their IT infrastructure so that the work is done effectively. Cloud can not only streamline law firm management activities; it can do so in a better, faster, and secure manner.
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What is cloud computing technology?
Cloud was born during the early 2000s. The internet brought the cloud when storage was getting difficult in a physical format. Thus, beginning an era of change across multiple industries.
Cloud computing can be defined as a data storage business method, which is capable of replacing all the existing hardware infrastructures. The main Cloud computing has emerged as a business solution that allows users to store and access data from anywhere in the world, not bound by physical constraints or geographical boundaries.
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These services are chargeable and available on demand. In simpler terms, instead of having our own IT infrastructure, we rent a cloud service provider to rent us access. Businesses like Amazon function on Infrastructure as a Service; where instead of spending largely on building infrastructure, they outsource it to a third-party service provider. Whereas GoogleApps, Facebook, etc., are based on Platform as a service (PaaS), where developers avail services without any installation or maintenance of tools in the system.
Moreover, the cloud for law firms is an amalgamation of many existing technologies. This technology is based on the feature of pay as you use and how much you use; naturally, a convenient option for law firms who have no specific requirement defined on a timely basis.
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Cloud for law firms- a shift from the traditional method
More and more legal professionals are shifting from the traditional way and switching to the tech-based environment. However, still many lawyers, who are used to a pre-tech practice, seem to be hesitant to make the shift. For them, it is a question, why unnecessary technology? But when we present the facts, that obviously outweigh the initial struggle during the adoption stage, these old schoolers agree that cloud for law firms is a secure and convenient option.
Advantages of the cloud for law firms:
Easily accessible data:
On the cloud, data is available with just a click. Be in any case document or client contact, anyone, who has access to the law firm database, can easily access the files from any corner of the world. Moreover, the device of access is not important on which the data is being accessed, because it is compatible with all the devices be it desktop, laptop, mobile, tablet. The data can be accessed anytime anywhere without any hindrance from the cloud service providers or any third party; all lawyers need is a device and internet facilities.
Sharing of data in the traditional method was a hassle and time-consuming, which is now really easy in the cloud. Moreover, anyone can steal or read a piece of the paper document shared through courier, fax, or email.
Some of the firms might be reluctant to provide sensitive data for reasons of its security, being skeptical about losing the data or the same data being revealed to the rival. On cloud-based legal case management solutions, the data is only accessible to the concerned parties. The cloud service providers are enabled with tools to identify any fraudulent use or unauthorized use. With passwords, encryption, and defined access, there is no threat of sensitive information leaking to unpleasant parties.
Not too high on a budget:
While shifting to the cloud, cost remains a major deciding factor for any law firm. They are worried about the initial cost, which will be incurred by them while making a shift from traditional to the cloud. However, the cloud is paying as you go and pay as much as you use the service. Meaning, the initial cost of transition may seem high, but in the long run, productivity increases and reduces overall costs.
It is very important for law firms to focus on their practice and clients, and not on the side work of maintaining IT infra and data storage issues. Cloud computing provides the flexibility of doing business and increases the overall efficiency of the company.
Ownership remains unchanged:
In the cloud for law firms, once an owner remains an owner. The ownership over the data/document remains unchanged, and the owner can rightfully control and modify the data and information which is stored.
The management of the information and data is automated, and it then becomes very easy to access the same. The existing data management system of individuals or law firms can be easily automated with the help of cloud computing. Moreover, with this, the ability to meet business demands is fast-paced.
Cloud computing has its own set of advantages and disadvantages, possesses a dynamic character that gives a sense of security and efficiency if adapted. It is constantly continuing to change the shape of business. To run in the race and be at par, law firms have to adapt to the latest technologies like others.
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