Cloud Computing and Security for Your Law Firm 

by Kaleb Buckner October 13, 2022
Cloud Computing and Security for Your Law Firm

Halloween may be the biggest holiday in October, but something even spookier threatens to scare people this holiday season: hackers.  

October is cybersecurity month, which means it’s time to take an inventory of the systems your law firm uses to protect its data. Every firm should take cybersecurity seriously. Nearly 60% of ethical hackers say it takes them five hours or less to break into a corporate environment once they identify a weak point.  

Shadowy cybercriminals aren’t the only threat, either. In fact, they aren’t even the biggest threat: collaborative research from Stanford University and a cybersecurity organization determined that almost 88% of all data breaches are the result of an employee mistake.  

That’s right. 88%.  

It’s critical that your firm stay up-to-date with the most recent tech to ensure that your data stays safe and you protect your clients and your reputation. On top of taking simple steps to ensure that your cybersecurity is secure, such as keeping your software updated and making sure all your devices are password-protected, there’s something bigger you can do: invest in cloud computing software. 

The common cybersecurity myth: on-premises is safer than the cloud 

With the boom in popularity of cloud services over the last decade or so, the risks increased, and this led to the growth of the cloud-based security and privacy industry. 

At this stage, cloud computing is much safer than on-premises software and is a must-have for any size law firm (especially smaller ones). When you work with a cloud service, their servers offer a high degree of security that’s hard for law firms—especially small to mid-sized ones—to replicate on-site, like end-to-end encryption, document and file sharing with unique security questions and expiring access deadlines, and server backups that prevent data loss.  

Why consider moving to the cloud 

Legal work is complex, fast-paced, and often unpredictable. To do your work to the best of your ability, you need tools that support you every step of the way without worrying about security and compliance. Here are a few reasons why cloud software delivers on those accounts. 

More reliable than on-premises systems 

Most on-premises systems store all your important information in one place. While this might seem safer than storing it online, it actually leaves your company more vulnerable for a number of reasons. 

Backup failures 

If your computers or hard drives stop working, then whatever you were working on that wasn’t backed up is completely gone. However, with cloud computing, there is usually a second server as a backup if the first one goes out. This way, you never lose any work. 

Even if you have backups, it’s easy to forget to back up all of your data as often as you need to. Cloud software can perform backups for you. Set up a regular backup schedule and then you can forget about it. Automating your backups through cloud software means that you’ll never lose critical client data. 

Natural disasters and other physical threats 

Another issue with on-premise solutions is physical risk. Unless you regularly back up (see above), your data is vulnerable to natural disasters or other sources of physical damage. Even less dramatic situations—let’s say, a leaky pipe—can wreak havoc on your server’s functionality.  

Inability to scale  

Growth is a good thing, but it doesn’t come without challenges. One of them is ensuring that your tools keep pace with your firm every step of the way. But when it comes to servers, this can be difficult. Scaling your servers takes time, money, and resources. If your firm owns the servers, this task falls on your IT team. 

Higher security standards 

In-house IT teams provide essential support for law firms, but they often wear many (many) hats. Maintaining a server is a complex job that requires attention, and when they are busy with other tasks, this responsibility could take a back seat. On the other hand, cloud software providers have dedicated teams to provide bank-level security for their servers.  

Cloud offers 24/7 monitoring 

Hackers don’t operate just during your office hours. If something goes wrong overnight and you don’t see it until the next morning, your clients’ data could be exposed and it’s too late to do anything. That’s why cloud computing often offers 24/7 monitoring of your systems. Teams of IT professionals who work for cloud software platforms can ensure your systems stay secure around the clock. 

Remote workers can work securely 

With on-premises software, remote workers often have to perform risky workarounds to access the files they need. This can lead to sharing files insecurely and leaving data vulnerable to hackers. 

However, with cloud-based software, all files are stored safely in the cloud. Cloud providers for law firms have to provide security certifications, including ISO 27001 and NIST 800-53. Remote lawyers can access the documents they need from anywhere and work on their own schedule without putting their clients’ information at risk. Plus, cloud computing makes it easy for remote workers to stay in touch with the rest of your team through tools like task management software.  

How to overcome common objections to cloud-based software 

Changing processes, procedures, and tools can involve growing pains, but it’s crucial to organizational growth. 47% of managers say that they must reinvent their businesses every three years or less to survive. To be prepared for the naysayers at your firm, look over these objections to cloud-based software and see how you can overcome them. 

Objection 1. It’s too difficult to migrate to the cloud 

There’s no doubt that migrating to the cloud is a process, but the benefits far outweigh the negatives. If someone had a challenging experience with this process before, it may be because there was no plan in place before the migration. 

Before you switch to cloud software, make sure you implement a game plan for the change. 

To switch to the cloud, follow these tips from Rocket Matter

  • Create a plan for your data migration 
  • Be up-to-date on the most recent cloud ethics 
  • Digitize any remaining paper data 
  • Cross-check your data in the new system to ensure that everything is transferred 

Objection 2. It’s too hard to implement new technology 

Adopting new technology takes some time, but it’s possible—and necessary. Introducing new tech to your team and expecting them to know how to do everything right away is unrealistic.  

To fix this, set up training sessions to ensure that everyone across your organization knows how to use the new software. 

It’s critical that your employees understand how the cloud software will make their day easier. If they don’t use much technology in their daily lives, they may need extra one-on-one help to fully understand the new system. Look for cloud software that offers free training so that you can learn from the source exactly how to use the program.   

Objection 3. My clients’ information won’t be safe or confidentia

Client confidentiality is required for any law firm. You must share your client’s information securely, or your ability to practice law could be at risk if anything leaks. If you’re nervous, you may be tempted to stick with paper files and couriers because that seems more confidential than sending it across the internet. However, this causes unnecessary delays, and important documents can still be lost. 

Instead, use secure file sharing and e-signature software that is made with lawyers in mind. 

Cloud software like Dropbox isn’t enough to share files. You’ll need file sharing and e-signature software with tools like customized security Q+A and expiring access deadlines so that no one else can view the files other than the intended recipient. 

Elevate your cybersecurity with Rocket Matter 

If you’re making the move to the cloud for the first time, get all the software tools you need in one place with Rocket Matter. Our robust legal practice management software offers everything you need to manage your law firm, including: 

  • Legal project management 
  • Case management 
  • Time tracking and billing 
  • File sharing and e-signature 
  • Legal trust accounting 
  • And more  

With Rocket Matter, we offer free training weekly so your firm can hone in on the topics you need help understanding the most. If you prefer one-on-one training, schedule a time with our trainers so that we can tailor a curriculum to the specific needs of your law firm.

We understand that problems come up and need to be resolved immediately. If any problems arise with Rocket Matter, our customer service is all U.S.-based. Your ticket goes straight to a human and is resolved in hours instead of days. 

If you’re ready to secure your law firm and change to cloud-based software, schedule a demo with Rocket Matter today. 

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