In a new white paper, Is the Cloud More Secure Than You Think?, we look at the security of cloud-based technology for storage of valuable data and information. As the paper notes, clients entrust their attorneys with their most personal and important materials — tax returns, divorce settlements, intellectual property, lawsuit documents, financial investments, copyrights — and should this information be compromised, it could be disastrous for a client and ruin a law firm’s reputation.
But, it’s also understandable why a law firm would resist uploading their data to a secure cloud provider, as the paper explains. After all, it seems like every week there’s a new story about a company being hit by ransomware, or a massive database hack that exposes the accounts of thousands of customers. Law firms could be forgiven for thinking that moving all their vital information (and that of their clients) into the cloud is taking a massive risk.
As it turns out, the paper explains, that isn’t the case. “Cloud computing offers far more extensive security than any law firm could provide on its own,” according to the paper. “Cloud databases lie within intricate, multitiered security networks that are constantly being upgraded and tested for potential weaknesses. There are backups within backups, all meant to protect your information in the event of a hack or a natural disaster.”
A Growing Transformation
As noted at the recent Thomson Reuters VANTAGE conference, 70% of CIOs surveyed in 2016 said going forward they would embrace a cloud-first strategy, no longer using the cloud as a supplemental database. This is a substantial change in attitude from just two years before, the paper states, when a majority of CIOs had considered cloud services as being ancillary.
“We’re seeing people trust us more and more,” said Rick Weyenberg, an Azure Cloud Solutions Architect at Microsoft, adding that Azure works with research hospitals to house such information as genetic markers. “That’s as sensitive as information gets.”
Yet while about 90% of Fortune 500 companies are using the cloud today, many law firms remain holdouts. But moving to the cloud will mean a change in perspective, and will likely be a necessary move at some point — one that’s likely to be demanded by clients. Law firms need to determine what data they need to secure, the costs of doing so in the future, and whether they’re truly the best equipped to be the ones securing it.