When the Cloud Is Down

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Law firms have adopted many “cloud” or SaaS (software as a Service) products for practice and case management, document storage, online backup, their office suite and more. NC State Bar Council 2011 Formal Opinion 6 outlines considerations law firms should make when evaluating cloud products. While the opinion does not set forth specific security requirements, it does recommend that lawyers who use SaaS products consider how they can retrieve data stored by the cloud provider, whether the firm discontinues the service, the service is inoperable or becomes insolvent. So, how do you backup the cloud?

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Protect a Portion of a Word Document

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CATHERINE’S CALL

By Catherine Sanders Reach

Do you need to share a word processing document with someone but want to limit what text the recipient can edit? For instance, would you like to create a pre-approved contract that allows some clauses to be editable? Or do you have standard internal documents that you would like to make available to everyone but limit editing of certain portions? Did you know that, unlike PDF creation tools that only allow a user to apply copy, print and edit restrictions to the whole document, Microsoft Word gives the document creator a number of granular editing restrictions?  Just go to the Review tab and click on “Restrict Editing”  in the “Protect” group.

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Better Search for Your Computer

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CATHERINE’S CALL

By Catherine Sanders Reach

A full text search engine will increase the efficiency of a simple DIY file management system and there are a number of fairly low cost tools available. Increasingly a law firm’s information is spread out on hard drives, cloud servers, local servers, external drives and elsewhere. Those with Windows 10 operating systems will find an effective search tool built into the system. The search is fast and efficient, but somewhat limited in the types of files it will index. For instance, it will not create a full text index of WordPerfect document files. Mac users have Spotlight built in for search, though other search tools like QuickSilver add functionality. But, what if you want to search everything, everywhere all at once?  Is it too much to ask for a search that quickly finds email, files stored locally and on the cloud, in a variety of file types?

Interested in learning more about file naming conventions, desktop search, and document management? Register for the Going Paperless: How to Turn Magical Thinking into a Reality CLE on Feb. 8, 2019.

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Be Proactive: Online Reviews and Reputation Management

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CATHERINE’S CALL

By Catherine Sanders Reach

Do you know what people are saying about you online? There are hundreds of online review sites, such as Yelp, Facebook and Google, as well as legal directories such as Avvo and lawyerratingz.com where anyone can add a review of your legal services. Following are some ways of how a firm can leverage reviews and enhance its online presence.

While there is recourse if someone says something negative about you or your firm online, the best defense is a good offence.

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Organize Email with Categories in MS Outlook

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CATHERINE’S CALL

By Catherine Sanders Reach

Folders are the typical way Outlook users organize emails, but sometimes you may want other intelligence about an email (or task, contact, calendar event) for organizational purposes. While you can put copies of a single email into multiple folders, or rely on search, another option is to apply categories. The way lawyers can use categories is particularly useful, as we will illustrate.

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ABA TechShow 2019 NCBA Member Discount and Some Redaction Tips

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Take Advantage of Extended Early Bird Pricing until Jan. 21.  North Carolina Bar Association Members Get $150 Off Standard Registration.

As a member of the North Carolina Bar Association, we want you to know that you can register for ABA TECHSHOW 2019 at a special reduced rate. This discount only applies to registrants that qualify for the Standard registration and will save you $150. You can register online and include this unique discount code: EP1913 at checkout to receive the discount.

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10 Email Dos and Don’ts for Lawyers

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CATHERINE’S CALL

By Catherine Sanders Reach

Lawyers use email every day and are very familiar with the mechanics of sending and receiving email. However, because of its ubiquity, lawyers often get complacent about best practices for using email effectively and proficiently. Email can be a great communication tool, but it can also be dangerous. Here are some reminders about email dos and don’ts.

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2018: ICYMI (In Case You Missed It)

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CATHERINE’S CALL

By Catherine Sanders Reach

The last week of the year is typically a time of reflection, and 2018 was no exception. Several popular blogs published their year-end wrap-ups, looking at the most popular posts and content from last year. While the exponential change wrought by technology means that the past is not a good predictor of the future, these compilations can help you at least get a focused glance at some useful news, trends and tips to apply to your new year.

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Google Advanced Search Tips for Lawyers

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CATHERINE’S CALL

By Catherine Sanders Reach

Most people use the Google search engine every day to look up information on everything from restaurant reviews to driving directions to the airspeed velocity of a laden swallow. In fact, the word google (lower case G) officially appeared as a verb in the Oxford English Dictionary in 2006.  The free web is especially useful for “ready reference” materials like census results, information about businesses and individuals, sample documents, government information and more. It can also be a great way to get up to speed on (or keep up with) an area of law by accessing the wealth of legal blogs, scholarly resources and substantive bar association publications available for free online. Lawyers will find that a familiarity with advanced search features of the Google search engine can help unearth useful information in a very short amount of time.

The Google search engine is designed to be easy and intuitive. They are constantly refining the search algorithm to help users find the most relevant information based on the keywords. While a basic search will yield great results, it will often yield too many results to adequately review. There are number of ways to filter and refine a search in Google to narrow them more specifically to meet the needs of the inquiry – without having to read thousands of results. Here are a few to memorize:

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ABA TECHSHOW 2019 NCBA Member Discount and Some Marketing Tips

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Sponsored Post

North Carolina Bar Association Members Get $150 Off Standard Registration

ABA TECHSHOW has over 31 years of experience bringing lawyers and technology together. Legal work today is dependent on technology to manage day to day activities, to practice more competently, and to service clients more effectively. ABA TECHSHOW teaches you how technology can work for you. Through the expansive EXPO Hall, CLEs, presentations, and workshops, you will be able to get your questions answered and learn from the top legal professionals and tech innovators, all under one roof. Regardless of your expertise level, there’s something for you at ABA TECHSHOW.

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