Cloud-Based Computing – a Better IT Solution For Law Firms

15 May 2017

Jon Robinson

Concerns around cybersecurity for private corporations, individual businesses, as well as government agencies have been brought to a fever pitch with the recent spate of publicized incursions, in particular the WannaCry ransomware attack in May 2017, which highlighted the potential dangers of using an on-premise IT solution.

We’ve talked to many law firms that are at the crossroad of deciding between an on-premise vs. a cloud-based solution for their IT needs, and learned what benefits they thought were most important.

We understand that it could be a challenging decision to make. After all, moving your files away from your office could feel like giving up “control” of your data.

However, if you’re armed with the right information, the decision is likely to be a no-brainer.

Challenges of On-Premise IT Solution

For many law firms, especially those experiencing fast business expansion and therefore having to store files and data for a rapidly growing number of clients and case files, maintaining their own in-house server has become costly and cumbersome:

1. Server Room Real Estate

Digital files are stored in servers, and servers require physical space.

As the amount of data you need to store grow, you’ll need more servers and more room to house the servers.

Unlike pens, paper, and staplers, you can’t just stack your servers up in a back room and hope never to see them again.

An on-site server room needs to have proper temperature control, ventilation, and moisture level. It has to be protected from unnecessary jostling, which causes vibration that could damage the hardware. It has to be free of clutter and disarray, and be protected against power volatility and intentional malice (e.g. break-ins, sabotage.)

All these requirements and on-going maintenance will result in an increase in overhead and operating cost.

2. Backup and Disaster Recovery

With more and more data stored digitally, it’s imperative that you backup your files regularly, ideally in real-time.

However, more data also means more work to design and oversee the backup process. A well-conceived backup plan not only makes a copy of your files and apps but also details how to restore your operation with minimal downtime.

Moreover, you need to have a redundant file backup system so you can restore your files as quickly as possible even when a physical disaster happens on-premise.

3. Protection Against Cyberattacks

As hackers are getting more sophisticated, it’s becoming increasingly challenging to keep up with security measures.

In-house IT professionals are finding it very difficult, if not impossible, to keep up with all the changes and updates required daily to keep an on-premise IT solution safe from malicious attacks.

Not to mention, the resources, personnel, and know-how required for maintaining a secure IT environment can strain the budget of a business of any size. This recurring cost will only snowball as the demand for protecting organizations against cyber criminals increases.

4. Staying Compliant

As a response to the new Wild West of the digital world, there are an increasing number of regulations to ensure governance and proper use of confidential information.

There are different regulations for different industries, which are updated frequently to stay in sync with technology.

You’d literally need a team of security experts to ensure that your IT environment and procedures are set up to be compliant and stay on top of future development so you don’t get caught off-guard.

A Better IT Solution – Cloud Computing

If you’re frustrated by the upkeep and maintenance of your in-house server, you have probably done some research and came across the notion of “cloud computing.”

First, cloud computing is more than having your files stored on just another computer off-site.

A top-tier cloud-computing platform is set up to provide a secure IT environment for their clients and customers at a fraction of the cost compared to an on-premise solution that offers similar level of security and capability.

When you move to the cloud, you can take advantage of the lower capital investment and operation cost, better integration, infinite scalability and of course, security and compliance.

Click here to learn about the benefits you can experience when you shift from an on-premise IT solution to a cloud-based solution.

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