September 13, 2011 Articles

Securing Your Firm: Information Security from 30,000 Feet

Law firms need to adequately address new and growing areas of security involving their digital data.

By Josh Lippy

For years, security was an afterthought in an organization’s infrastructure design. Much of this was due to the fact that in the beginning operating systems and applications were developed for ease of use rather than subverting a security breach. By nature, security measures make computers less user-friendly, and adding security measures threatened growth and competitive advantage. During the early computing boom, to encourage adoption for as many users as possible, choosing this “ease of use” path gained large software and system-providers market share. Software companies eventually found out the hard way that what made their systems popular also created exposure to rampant attack.

Compliance issues and exposures resulting from Internet connectivity, both common to law firms, have driven cyber security to become one of the fastest growing segments of the information technology field. The worldwide web is the “wild west” of the digital frontier. As a law firm frequently handling extremely sensitive and proprietary information, we must not take digital security lightly. Protecting the attorney-client privilege electronically is an appropriate client expectation. Law firms must uphold this important relationship in all aspects of firm business. Law firms need to adequately address new and growing areas of security.

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