Legal

The New Silk Road

Imagine what it would be like to go from LA to SF in 35 minutes, London to Paris in 15, or Dubai to Abu Dhabi in 20?

Well the Hyperloop One team is taking us all one step closer to achieving the luxury of traveling faster than a jet plane, that is, over 760 mph on the ground. Hyperloop One took a trip to the Nevada desert last week for the Hyperloop Propulsion Open Air Test, where they built a track to test high-speed electric motors.

The Hyperloop technology was invented out of frustration with California’s plan to build a bullet train between San Francisco and Los Angeles, which would have been the slowest and most expensive bullet train per mile. Travel between two major California cities requires a quick and efficient mode of transportation, making Hyperloop One’s test run last week a major milestone in technology.

FILETRAIL'S SILK ROAD

FileTrail has changed the face of records management in the same way Hyperloop One has revolutionized transportation FileTrail was started in 2000 out of the frustration of implementing Windows software that had to be installed on every desktop and big-stack software companies that made it difficult for their customers to select the best of breed. 

Because of this, we vowed to put the customer before profits.  That meant that every process had to be easy to use so that we didn’t need a thick manual. Improvement would be continual, using customer feedback. Every client would have an easy migration path so they can stay current with the latest enhancements, and integration would be built with any vendors who delivered the best value to the customer in their area. 

THE STANDARD FOR AM 250 LAW FIRMS

The result is a powerful and modern browser-based solution that works both on-premise and in the Cloud, which has tools to integrate with best of breed systems in DM, Intake, Conflicts, Holds, and more.  Our focus on the customer has led the FileTrail product to a place where Records Management staff provide better services to the firm, management has access to on-demand graphical reporting to support decisions, and IT no longer bears the burden of desktop installation and support.

Because of this start, FileTrail is the new Records Management standard for the top 250 AM Law firms. While Hyperloop One is achieving great improvements in transportation, we are achieving great things for large law firms.

Read about how you can test drive the FileTrail solution at no cost in the FileTrail Sandbox blog below.

Shared Drives are Big Investments

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Corporate Shared Drives: > $2k per Terabyte

From startups to giant enterprises, the quick and easy way to save and share information has always been with shared drives. From the floppy disk to portable thumb drive, employees would pass on information like documents and files, from one hand to another. Employees on a daily level won’t even think twice about their shared drives creating duplicates, or documents that aren’t version controlled, and how much storage space they’re using.

However the question today is: How much are we paying for the convenience of shared drives?

As an organization, are you wondering where your money is going for the convenience of your employees using shared drives? Let’s take a look.

Storing Information Cost $$$

Whether your company is hosting an on premise solution, or paying monthly for their cloud service, data storage is expensive. The going rate for shared drive storage will run a company about $2 a gb. When thinking in terms of terabytes, that’s going to run you $2,000. The equation is simple here, the more data you have equals the more storage you’ll need.

The issue with shared drives is that they’re inherently difficult to control on a management level. They tend to belong to the individuals that use them and those individuals dictate what information is stored.  Also, there are no technical restrictions as to what can be stored onto a shared drive thus corporate regulations are difficult to apply. What this leaves your company with is a drove of data that is likely to be a duplication of other duplications.

If your employees are loading these duplications up into your server, next thing you know, you’ll have whole terabytes full of unmanageable files and documents. The more regularly your company utilizes personal shared drives, the more you’ll have to pay for storing all of that bad data.

Reduced Productivity Cuts into Profits

With shared drives, there’s no confirmation that what you find, is the latest version of the file or documents you need. The lack of version control reduces productivity when an employee has to double check or even triple check to make sure the file is correct. This waste of time cuts into productivity which cuts into the profits that an employee is bringing in, either through sales or support.

Without regulating and managing the information that gets stored, shared drives not only create duplications, they save unfinished files or older versions of the file. When an employee is looking for Mr. John Doe’s files, they might very well pull up a half finished report.

Not controlling duplications and versions being stored, make it nearly impossible for document searches to be done. Employees will spend a significant amount of time on company dime, searching for the correct and most up to date version of a file.

Better Save Up for Litigation Risks

The use of shared drives is an extremely high risks practice. Legal issues of any manner are costly and having an inadequate data management practice could result in numerous fees, failed audits and litigation risks.

With each and every item that comes from a shared drive going into your server, compliance and retention policies must be applied. In order to be legally compliant, this data must then be managed through its entire lifecycle and defensibly disposed. If your employees are storing important information on their personal shared drives and those records or files never make it up into your servers, then critical information can be lost at any moment. If your employees are storing redundant information files, then legally, your organization must apply compliance, retention, and manage the lifecycle of all redundant files.

Whether your organization is being proactive by setting corporate rules and steps to minimize shared drive risks, that time spent is costing money. If your organization loses information, that will cost money. If your organization fails to manage the data stored in and from shared drives, the cost of fees, failed audits and litigation risks will add up. This is cash that’s just flying out the front door.

From storage costs, to loss profits and litigation fees, shared drives are racking up a major bill within organizations. Don’t let their convenience fool you into thinking that this is a manageable practice because it’s not and everyday, organizations are forking over big bucks.

 

 

CIO's Take Center Stage in Epic Apple vs. FBI Battle

Information Security: Apple vs. FBI.

It seems as if everyone is choosing a side in the Apple vs. FBI battle over customer data privacy and security. As an organization that understand the comprehensive need for corporate governance standards, this conflict hits right at home. Having a software that is proficient in supporting legal firms and government agencies, you could say that one of our strong suits is in managing sensitive client matter and this is done so with collaborative development of a proactive information strategy.  I will state here that we decline to choose a side to stand on, however, we can begin to take a closer look at how this case can be explored through a governance lens.

Applying an information management solution would require the creation of a corporate governance framework. This is the first step in designing an information governance strategy for your business. There are certain industries where client privacy would weigh in as a significantly more important stakeholder. Industry level heavyweights that rely on strict client data privacy would include: law firms, medical organizations, and banks. The Silicon Valley isn’t often spotlighted in regards to client data breaches whereas JPMorgan Chase, Sony Entertainment, or the 112 million records in the healthcare industry were in hot waters.

The Silicon Valley has been relatively immune to client data breaches due to the autonomy of giant technology companies such as Amazon, Google, Facebook, and Apple, these tech giants take care of themselves and have created in their wake, incredibly secure, privacy driven products and solutions for themselves and their customers. So secure in fact, that government agencies, such as the FBI, are legally asking for assistance in hacking through these encrypted firewalls.

The Wall Street Journal writes that, “CIO’s are at the center of [the] battle over security [and] privacy,” in regards to the public battle between Apple and the FBI. This battle has received extreme scrutiny on both ends, think Snowden’s heroic tweets and President Obama’s full support of the FBI. Apple is an organization that receives a majority of its revenue from product sales and these products are advertised as highly secure and private.

The customers of Apple trust that Apple has their best interest in mind with privacy as one of the largest issues. As a consumer, you don’t want just anyone to be able to access your iPhone if you so happen to lose it. We keep almost everything on our personal mobile devices so that scenario tends to terrify people. When privacy is concerned, everyone is always up in arms. So, what is Apple doing from a governance lens that we should take a closer look at?

Right now we are witnessing something that tends not present itself often to the public. Battles such as these tend to stay within the office of CIO’s and that is where they’re resolved. What is happening now between Apple and the FBI is that the corporate governance policies of Apple is being physically acted out and implemented. As stated earlier, corporate governance policies are created with an information governance framework and Apple’s policies restrict them from aiding the FBI in which they’ve been asked to provide a hacking software that would break into their own product

There is wide concern on whether or not these breaches of privacy could lead to colossal breaches of privacy for all iPhone customers when in the hands of the FBI. Consider that there have been widespread privacy breaches before such as last year’s hacking of 21.5 million US government computers. CIO’s must decide how this situation should be handled and it’s important to consider that there’s no one side in this when it’s your organization involved. Today, we see that Apple had developed a thorough and strict corporate governance strategy regarding customer privacy and security and the FBI request would be considered a breach of policy. As a CIO, what would you do?

 

Legacy Data Migration: "Out with the Old and In with the New"

There comes a time, and the time just so happens to be now if you’re reading this, when your firm must migrate its legacy data, moving it into a more secure and efficient platform. When should you begin to ponder the need of a legacy data migration, you ask? Data migration is necessary after sunsetted PRM, mergers, or acquisitions. However, there are a multitude of important considerations to be made regarding costs, legal compliance, accessibility, and retention. The main objective of a data migration could be anything from consolidating systems, increased functionality, updated hardware, more efficient backups, or an increase in security and support services.

Data exists in abundant formats, and subsequently, data migration can refer to any number of types of transitions. Remember when commercials were shot on VHS? Bets are that those dinosaurs are still lying around and now need to be converted and then loaded up into a flash drive. This is just one example, but moving data from older to new storage is an upgrade that will garner plentiful benefits.

Despite the type of migration, there are general steps that will help adequately prepare for such an event. In many organizations, however, data migration is handled reactively rather than proactively.  Being proactive will cut costs and increase effectiveness so that the firm can stay within budget, ensure data quality and integrity, while satisfying compliance requirements. Designing and employing a structured, integral and efficient method is therefore the best way to prepare for data migration, an event in which you firm can no longer escape.

Your best solution is to partner with an expert that offers a broad selection of content management solutions.  This may be the optimized strategy route for your firm to take into consideration. Be litigation-ready without the headache by finding an organization that understands your needs and is able to tailor their products to best fit your firm. More brains are better than one. As we said earlier, out with the old and in with the new. Despite the trickiness, your firm will feel more protected once that pesky legacy data has migrated.

Tackle E-Discovery with a Proactive Approach

How to tackle e-discovery with a proactive approach and strategy. How prepared would your company be, if they received an e-discovery request today? For many companies, the practice of disregarding a proper e-discovery plan is far too common. Inefficient e-discovery practices almost always lead to costly expenses, in addition to sanctions or fines that are handed down.

The first step every company should take in a proactive effort to properly prepare an e-discovery strategy, is to familiarize themselves with the Electronic Discovery Reference Model or EDRM diagram.

EDRM.net states, “The EDRM diagram represents a conceptual view of the e-discovery process, not a literal, linear or waterfall model. One may engage in some but not all of the steps outlined in the diagram, or one may elect to carry out the steps in a different order than shown here.”

Taken directly from their website, EDRM.net lists the stages of the EDRM diagram as follows: Information Governance – Getting your electronic house in order to mitigate risk & expenses should e-discovery become an issue, from initial creation of electronically stored information (ESI) through its final disposition.

  • Identification – Locating potential sources of ESI & determining its scope, breadth & depth.
  • Preservation and Collection – Ensuring that ESI is protected against inappropriate alteration or destruction. Gathering ESI for further use in the e-discovery process (processing, review, etc.).
  • Processing, Review, and Analysis – Reducing the volume of ESI and converting it, if necessary, to forms more suitable for review & analysis. Evaluating ESI for relevance & privilege. Evaluating ESI for content & context, including key patterns, topics, people & discussion.
  • Production – Delivering ESI to others in appropriate forms & using appropriate delivery mechanisms.
  • Presentation – Displaying ESI before audiences (at depositions, hearings, trials, etc.), especially in native & near-native forms, to elicit further information, validate existing facts or positions, or persuade an audience.Preparation remains key for companies that want to proactively handle e-discovery. Ensuring you have the necessary practices and procedures in place, is the first step every company should take in order to be e-discovery ready. The risks far outweigh the benefits of avoiding a proper e-discovery strategy, so start familiarizing yourself with the EDRM stages today!