The Top Risks from Mobile Lawyering and How to Solve Them

By: Absolute Editorial Team | 3/18/2015

Legal practitioners these days are no longer tied to desks, but instead are on the move, conducting business, taking care of clients, and turning 30-minutes commutes into 30-minutes strategy sessions. While there is no doubt that mobility - both the devices and the power “suite” of apps - helps lawyers take care of business, it’s not without its risks.

With such portable endpoints, it’s no surprise that these devices are easily misplaced or lost. And often they can be the target of thieves—either by opportunity or because someone specifically wants your data.

In an article for Corporate Counsel, Mobile Lawyering: 3 Risk and 3 Solutions,” I explore the top risks you face as a legal practitioner when it comes to mobility:

  • Client Trust - No client ever wants to hear you've put their privileged communications at risk or put sensitive company data at risk.
  • Professional Reputation - Reputation is everything in the legal profession and Google guarantees that any mistake you make will live on forever.
  • Privacy Law Violations - Regulatory bodies not only feed the PR cycle but can levy severe financial penalties.

As a legal professional, the expectation of privacy and protection is placed on your shoulders. It’s not simply enough to encrypt data and expect this to be enough, you need to be able to prove that the data is preserved. What if the burglary was an inside job? What if the information on the device is publicly divulged after you've stated it's secure? The damage to the relationship and the loss of trust that would occur is likely irreversible. It also may expose you and your company to lawsuits that could prove devastating.

The solution to these three risks come through a combination of:

  • Technology - The ability to remotely connect to any device to know where it is, who’s using it and if data has been accessed or removed. Persistence technology can maintain this connection.
  • Strategy - Go through scenarios and have it in writing. Include a strong BYOD policy (check out our implementation guide to help you start your own).
  • Accountability - If an incident occurs, you need to both safeguard data and take steps to ensure it won’t happen again. Make sure you have the tools in place to investigate and uncover the details of security incidents.

If you have any questions about the role of legal counsel in protecting data, I’d be happy to help.

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