Moving Your Law Practice to the Cloud

Is your law firm considering to move from the Stone Age to the technology age?  Are you aware of the current developments in technology within the legal profession?  More importantly, have you heard about cloud computing, or simply cloud?  If your law firm is thinking about its technological future, then there are certain things that you should become aware of.  Let’s take a look:

Old Systems

If your law firm has not yet taken a walk in the clouds, no need to worry, you are not alone.  In fact, many law firms are still running on antiquated operating systems like Microsoft XP.  Is this bad to a certain extent?

Yes!  This is because this operating system is no longer supported by Microsoft, which means there are no longer security patches being released, making your computer system vulnerable to breaches.

What is the cost of a security breach?  For a law firm a lot.  Not only in terms of time to recover lost files, but more importantly, sensitive client information and data can be exposed to unscrupulous individuals.  So is there an option you can explore that would not drain your firm’s budget? Here is the most recommended solution:

Cloud Computing

One of the first options that come to mind is to update to the latest operating system.  Mind you though, this can be an expensive effort depending on the number of units to be upgraded.  When you upgrade your operating system, issues of compatibility with existing software you are using can also arise.

Another option that can be explored is to upgrade on-site hardware so that you get the operating system bundled in.  This may sound cost efficient initially, but you have to consider that you will need to provision for maintenance costs as well as possible replacement costs that would have to be done every five years on the average.

The best option regardless of the financial capability of your law firm to consider is cloud computing.  With this platform, existing workstations can be converted into portals.  This means no upgrade necessary because it will be done externally.  Using this method also extends the operating life of your computer system.  If you need to replace the hardware unit, you don’t need to worries about transforming the data, your data are save in the cloud and can be accessed as long as there are internet connection.

It costs considerably less than upgrading a whole computer hardware and software. Definitely, cloud computing is the best path to take on the road to technological advancement.

Off-Site Computing

Are you one of those lawyers who need complete control over your data?  If so, you may resist the transition to an off-site computing facility initially.  However, when you factor in the advantages that off-site computing presents, then you will realize that cloud computing is the best option for you.

In a traditional on-site computing setup, there is a danger of unauthorized persons snooping around your servers.  This is virtually non-existent with an off-site computing platform because before anyone can sneak in and break into your server, they would have to pass through the security measures of the data center.

What happens when your building or office burns down?  All the information you are keeping locally will be destroyed with it.  In cloud computing facilities, even in the event of a fire bringing down the center, you can be assured that your data will be safe and recoverable.  This is because the backups and data are usually stored in different servers that are physically present in various locations.  So when you consider this, losing control over the backup and security protocols of your data can be worth it.

Deployment Costs

How much will you set aside for the hardware, software, and manpower costs of deployment of your computing system?  Depending on the size of your firm and geographical presence, this can run from thousands to millions.  More importantly, you would have to spend a considerable amount again in a couple of years for the maintenance.

With cloud computing, deployment cost is only a fraction.  But more than the dollar value is the advantages that go with it.  Subscribing to the Cloud gives you Internet capability that can be anywhere from 75 to 100 mbps, which is more than enough even for a huge law firm.  Upgrading of hardware, software, as well as training of manpower is no longer an issue.

When your internet connection goes offline, you have to call customer service to get clarification when service will be restored.  With cloud computing, once the internet connection goes offline, you will be seamlessly switched to a backup connection giving you virtually zero downtime.

So, are you ready to take your law firm into the cloud?  Before you do so, make sure that you contact NexStep, a lawyer cloud storage provider as your partner in providing secure cloud computing.