8 April 2017Jon Robinson
Even though more and more law firms are switching to cloud-computing services to centralize and streamline their operations, concerns about data security remain for many.
Before we look at how secure cloud-computing is, let’s get onto the same page…
What is the Cloud?
Despite rapid adoption of cloud-based services, there is still some uncertainty about what the terms “cloud” and “cloud computing” means exactly.
You may very well be using cloud-based services in your firm without even realizing it. Apps such as Slack, Google Apps, or Dropbox are all cloud-based services.
In short, “the cloud” refers to any software that’s not installed locally on your computer. Accessing the cloud requires Internet access, either through a browser or a mobile application.
For example, if you use Gmail, you are using a cloud-based service. Gmail is not installed on your computer and no email is stored on your computer. The application is hosted remotely by the service provider (in this case, Google.) To access Gmail, you either log in through your browser or the Gmail app.
What does managing case data on the cloud look like? Click here to request a free demonstration.
Law Firms Using Cloud-Computing Cite Lower Cost and Ease of Access
According to a report from the American Bar Association (ABA), 38% of law firms used web-based software solutions or services in 2016. That’s up from 31% in 2015 and 30% in 2014. Among law firms currently using the cloud, 74% said they would continue using it.
This upward trend indicates that law firms are realizing the benefits of cloud-computing, which include:
- Anytime-anywhere access
- Low entry cost
- Predictable monthly expenses
- Eliminating in-house IT requirements
- Mobility and ease of collaboration
Interestingly, among enterprise IT professionals who understand the intricacy and cost of setting up and maintaining a secure IT environment, security is viewed as a top organizational benefit of the cloud.
Cloud Security Concerns Don’t Square With Reality
Understandably, both lawyers who are using the cloud-based services and those who aren’t have expressed concerns about security.
More than 70% of current cloud users told the ABA that they had concerns about security and losing control of data, while 63% of non-users cited security concerns as a reason for not adopting the cloud.
Are their concerns valid? Does the risk of data breach outweigh the benefits of increased productivity, reduced operational cost, and convenience?
Data security is and should be a concern for attorneys, especially in light of recent data breaches, such as the prominent 2016 breach that resulted in the release of the “Panama Papers.”
Many law firm owners, however, may be reluctant to use cloud-based services simply because they don’t understand how it works.
It’s normal to experience uneasiness when new technology is adopted, yet experts overwhelmingly agree that the modern cloud offers more security than an on-site platform.
In addition, cloud security concerns usually diminish with experience. One survey shows that 87% of businesses that have used the cloud don’t rate security as a top-five concern.
Selecting a Secure Cloud-Based Platform
When you place your trust in the cloud, you’re placing your trust in the company that manages the cloud.
As a law firm, you’re not only protecting your own data.
You’re also responsible for your clients’ confidential information. Any data breach will not only cost you financially but also your reputation and client relationships.
With that in mind, we build Lifity on the Salesforce platform, which is compliant with some of the most rigorous, industry-accepted security and privacy standards — including HIPAA/PHI.
More than 150,000 businesses, including many multinational corporations, trust Salesforce to safeguard their sensitive data, including those in the financial services, healthcare and life sciences, and media.
Not to mention, Salesforce cloud security is trusted by government agencies such as the Department of Defense.
Contact Litify to Learn More About Our Secure Cloud Solutions
Litify understands the importance of attorney-client confidentiality to your firm’s success, which is why we use security tools that exceed all industry requirements.
To learn more about cloud computing solutions and how we can protect the privacy of your data, please contact us for a free demo.