Tablets in the Courtroom.

Discussion in 'Professions' started by Bronsky, Mar 1, 2014.

  1. XJ12

    XJ12 Scribbler - Standard Member

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    True, but collecting info is baked in 8.1 license:

    By accepting this agreement or using the software, you agree to all of these terms and consent to the transmission of certain information during activation and for Internet-based features of the software. If you do not accept and comply with these terms, you may not use the software or its features.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 16, 2015
  2. jnjroach

    jnjroach Technology Strategist Super Moderator

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    It comes down to who you want with your info...MS publishes exactly what it is capturing and how it is used...
     
  3. Bronsky

    Bronsky Wait and Hope. Senior Member

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    Finally had the opportunity to put the tablet through its paces editing a fairly large appellate brief. I had no issues with the size of the display while editing my brief, which took a couple of hours. I was actually surprised at how well I could work.

    WP_20140402_001.jpg

    The tablet is also a big help at work when I need to access the cases I'm explaining in my brief and to capture pin-point page cites to the propositions I am trying to get across to the appellate court.

    WP_20140403_001.jpg
     
  4. Bronsky

    Bronsky Wait and Hope. Senior Member

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    Lawyers moving to the cloud?

    As many of you know, the Rules of Professional Conduct have been lagging far behind technology. Acceptance of electronic files in lieu of hard copies is only a few years old. Electronic trust accounting is even more recent (although in NJ, we are still not permitted to transfer out of our trust account electronically - we are still required to keep a paper trail by using a paper check).

    It looks like our regulatory bodies are finally starting to consider something less than an absolute ban on cloud storage. The ABA has proposed Model Rule 1.6 which is something less than a ban on use of the cloud. Here is the official comment to the rule.

    Acting Competently to Preserve Confidentiality

    [18] Paragraph (c) requires a lawyer to act competently to safeguard information relating to the representation of a client against unauthorized access by third parties and against inadvertent or unauthorized disclosure by the lawyer or other persons who are participating in the representation of the client or who are subject to the lawyer’s supervision. See Rules 1.1, 5.1 and 5.3. The unauthorized access to, or the inadvertent or unauthorized disclosure of, information relating to the representation of a client does not constitute a violation of paragraph (c) if the lawyer has made reasonable efforts to prevent the access or disclosure. Factors to be considered in determining the reasonableness of the lawyer’s efforts include, but are not limited to, the sensitivity of the information, the likelihood of disclosure if additional safeguards are not employed, the cost of employing additional safeguards, the difficulty of implementing the safeguards, and the extent to which the safeguards adversely affect the lawyer’s ability to represent clients (e.g., by making a device or important piece of software excessively difficult to use). A client may require the lawyer to implement special security measures not required by this Rule or may give informed consent to forgo security measures that would otherwise be required by this Rule. Whether a lawyer may be required to take additional steps to safeguard a client’s information in order to comply with other law, such as state and federal laws that govern data privacy or that impose notification requirements upon the loss of, or unauthorized access to, electronic information, is beyond the scope of these Rules. For a lawyer’s duties when sharing information with nonlawyers outside the lawyer’s own firm, see Rule 5.3, Comments [3]-[4].

    I read this to say that we merely have to act reasonably to protect client information, even in the cloud and are not absolutely responsible for all data breaches. Of course, what is and is not reasonable is still anyone's guess. There are at least suggested factors for the Courts to misapply.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2014
  5. Mesosphere

    Mesosphere Geek. Senior Member

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    I wonder how frequent actual cloud breaches have been. I'm not talking about someone stealing salted password hashes or another partial breach, but actual access to a users files where it wasn't the fault of the user (marking a document as publicly available, weak password, etc.). Apart maybe from an NSA backdoor, I doubt this has happened much at all. If the actual record of data breaches in OneDrive is very good (I don't know for sure that it is, I just suspect), would that be evidence enough that using it is "acting reasonably"?
     
  6. Kumabjorn

    Kumabjorn ***** is back Senior Member

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    In case of a breach (hypothetical case) would the lawyer be required to show that password has been changed on a regular and frequent schedule?

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  7. Bronsky

    Bronsky Wait and Hope. Senior Member

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    I would think that changing passwords regularly would easily fall under the "reasonable steps" rubric. The most obvious threat to client information is ex-staff or professionals. Imagine someone gets estate account information and drains the accounts with falsified documents. That might be more than a civil matter, it might violate the RPC's as well.
     
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  8. Kumabjorn

    Kumabjorn ***** is back Senior Member

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    My point being that failing to do that could make the lawyer liable.

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  9. Bronsky

    Bronsky Wait and Hope. Senior Member

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    Yes. But not only liable in a malpractice sense but a serious breach could subject the lawyer to professional discipline and cold trigger obligations of the client security funds.
     
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  10. Kumabjorn

    Kumabjorn ***** is back Senior Member

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    And we all know how diligently we change our passwords, right? Disbarred would be one possible outcome?

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