Recommended reading

  • ABA Chart of Cloud-Computing Ethics opinions – an excellent online map of the latest state ethics opinions regarding cloud computing. In general the requirements from each state are consistent: they mostly call for attorneys to pay attention to how the cloud provider stores data, and to be alert for possible pitfalls.
  • Dane Ciolino’s Legal Ethics Blog – provides practical, up-to-the-minute information for Louisiana lawyers who want to avoid ethical pitfalls, including ones involving technology, cloud computing, social media, and online activity in general.
  • Cloud Computing for Lawyers – Nikki Black – (ABA Law Practice Management book) – explains how to weigh the risks and benefits of cloud computing, and how to avoid or minimize the risks of compromising client confidentiality.

Recommended Tools

  • 1Password – The best protection against hackers getting access to all your online services is to have different passwords for each website. A password manager lets you do this in a way that’s easy and convenient. There are other password managers, such as Roboform and LastPass. Pick one and learn to use it. If you don’t you’ll regret it when someone hacks into one of your online services and then gains access to all your other ones because you use the same password for everything.
  • BoxCryptor – free encryption on your Mac or PC that works with Dropbox. Store secure files in a special folder in Dropbox, and then access them from your iPad, at which point you can move them to other applications if you want. The free version is supposedly only for non-commercial use so be guided accordingly.
  • CrashPlan – a great backup service (and software) that offers an easy way to back up and store personal, business and enterprise data securely – offsite, onsite and online in the cloud. Has a 30 day free trial. The “family plan” costs $6/month and allows you to back up mass amounts of data on as many as 10 computers for one flat price. Best part is you get a weekly email report on the status of each computer’s backup state.
  • Ironkey secure 2GB USB drive – (~$100) The USB key allows secure file storage, and is not accessible without the password. Ironkey also uses its own secure network for anonymous browsing via the included browser. Just click to activate or turn off. You can do all your secure browsing (e.g. shopping, banking, etc.) directly off the Ironkey without concern of storing anything on a local computer. The included password manager is a fantastic way to track all your passwords and autofill the form on the sites. Think of it as a Swiss Army Knife of secure tools

Cloud Services

  • DropBox – It’s a service for your computer, and syncs files across multiple devices via cloud storage. But it allows download to the iPad or iPhone (hence, it’s also a way to import files to your iPad/iPhone). Because it syncs it is also backing up, which makes it very valuable for protecting important data.
  • SugarSync – Same as DropBox, but has a couple of potential downsides: (1) slightly harder to configure, and (2) not as many apps on the iPad or iPhone connect to SugarSync (e.g. TrialPad or TranscriptPad).
  • – more robust service that costs more, but has better features if you need more privacy and security.

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