Boab IT Blog

Is Dropbox safe for lawyers? How to ensure data security in a cloud-based world

Posted by Maria Hurtado on Jul 13, 2017 9:38:00 AM

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Did you know that if your law firm uses a data storage solution such as Dropbox, you may unknowingly be putting your clients’ most valuable data at risk?

By utilising an off-shore data storage service such as Dropbox, you are completely dependent upon the terms and conditions of the provider, as well as the local law pertaining to the physical location of the data storage – which in the case of DropBox is in the United States.  

In addition, if your clients’ data is stored outside of Australia, on a site such as Dropbox, and you do not make your clients aware of this fact, then it is quite possible you are not compliant with the Australian Privacy Act and the associated Privacy Principals.

So is Dropbox safe for lawyers to use in a professional context? The answer, in our experience, is no.

In the age of Wikileaks, and with hackers constantly honing their skills, the threat of a serious breach of your security, and resulting leak of your highly sensitive and confidential client data, is ever-present.

Any data leak, even on a small scale, could see your law firm’s reputation in tatters.

So how can you protect your firm’s data? Here are our three tips:


1. Invest in on-shore data storage from a reputable provider

Rather than using an offshore service such as Dropbox to share and store documents, consider a trusted, local solution.

When you choose an Office 365 Business Essentials Bundle, Business Bundle, Business Premium Bundle or Enterprise E3 solution via the Boab IT Portal, for instance, you receive access to Skykick Unlimited Cloud Backup for your email, SharePoint and OneDrive. As well as the confidence that your data will be regularly and securely backed up, you also have the peace of mind of knowing that your data is hosted on-shore, in the Microsoft Azure cloud.

With Microsoft Azure, all of your data stays on-shore, in local data centres. 

You also own all of your data, including text, sound, video or image files, as well as software, and you have full control over where your data is stored, and how it is securely accessed and deleted.

In addition, if the Australian government wants your customer data – including for national security purposes – it must follow the applicable legal process, serving Microsoft with a court order for content or a subpoena for account information. If compelled to disclose customer data, Microsoft will promptly notify you and provide a copy of the demand, unless legally prohibited from doing so.


DOWNLOAD THE WHITEPAPER:   Key technology considerations for small law firms in 2018


2. Make sure your people know the answer to the question: Is Dropbox safe for lawyers?

Your people are your first line of defense when it comes to protecting your client’s data.  

Ensure your employees are aware that Dropbox is not the most secure choice for storing and sharing documents, and let them know why.

It’s also important to keep your people informed regarding all the ways security can be breached, and the sources of viruses that can infect your systems. This can include viruses sent in email attachments, social media spread malware, and websites that are designed to appear trustworthy while offering false software updates for download.


3. Step up your security

Today, backing up your data in the cloud is becoming an essential part of data security. When you choose a solution via the Boab IT Portal, you have the peace of mind of knowing your data is continually backed up. This means that in the event of a ransomware attack, your data is still easily accessible and current, and can be restored quickly and easily.

For peace of mind, it’s worth securing extra protection for your data and email. By investing in Microsoft’s Advanced Threat Protection as an add-on for Office 365, for instance, you can protect your email in real time against unknown and sophisticated attacks.

It’s also important to keep your antivirus and security software up to date, and put a good firewall in place. If you are operating with a bring-your-own-device model, ensure you have very stringent security measures in place, or talk to an expert team like Boab IT about managing this aspect of your business for you.


DOWNLOAD THE WHITEPAPER:   Key technology considerations for small law firms in 2018


Find out more

Learn more about Dropbox and alternative document storage solutions for your business, contact the expert team at Boab IT on 1800 659 765.