The popularity and efficiency of using the cloud for business operations have led to an increase in cloud washing.
Software vendors want to attract customers and users, and what better way than to market their solutions for cloud computing? As a user searching for a solution for your law firm, you have to be cautious of vendors simply trying to get your buy-in by misrepresenting their solutions.
This article will explain what cloud washing is. We will also explain how you can evaluate your legal software to ensure you get exactly what you require and expect from it.
What Is Cloud Washing?
Cloud washing is when brands intentionally, and often deceptively, link the cloud to their product or service. It usually happens with older software solutions. Companies will make them seem more up-to-date and tech-forward by marketing them as cloud-based. However, the software usually isn’t actually fully cloud-based and may still require hardware and manual upgrades.
Some vendors may also use the term ‘cloud’ to describe the movement of physical, on-site software and hardware to virtual, centralized spaces. There is a difference, however, between virtualization and true cloud computing software.
Fully cloud-based software is designed and built for cloud computing and function in the cloud.
How Cloud-Based Legal Software Helps Firms Comply With GDPR
It is especially vital for law firms to be wary of cloud washing and their selection of legal software. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) emphasizes law firms’ and lawyers’ responsibility to safeguard client information.
Using a genuine cloud-based solution helps your law firm remain compliant with this regulation in the following ways:
Authentic and entirely cloud-based software vendors will acknowledge their role in your firm’s GDPR compliance. This means that their solution will include relevant features that support your ability to comply.
Working with solution providers that aren’t cloud-washed will reduce the pressure on your firm to comply with the GDPR. Your provider will give you the assistance and expertise to handle all your data safely and efficiently.
Protects Client Data
Cloud-based solutions retain your data in several off-site locations. This means your data remains safe in the event of a destructive incident at your premises. For example, you can rest assured that you won’t lose your data in the event of a fire or natural disaster.
The GDPR requires law firms to have fully backed-up systems that support data recovery if necessary. A good, completely cloud-based system should offer safe data backups and protection.
Constant Security Updates & Scalability
GDPR also requires firms to encrypt data where necessary and to maintain security standards. Your firm has to implement policies to evaluate and constantly improve and update data security. This compliance requirement can be challenging for firms to implement with physical on-premise software. Cloud-washed or server systems can also present a challenge when it comes to updating.
On the other hand, cloud-based systems provide automatic updates and support your business’ scaling. Your firm need not worry about scheduling updates, and you can confidently expand your firm, knowing your system will develop and change with your new numbers.
How To Check That Your Law Firm Software Is Fully Cloud-Based
If you want to ensure that your software choice is what it seems (cloud-based, that is), you can use the following checklist:
Evaluate The Security
Ask yourself these security questions when analyzing possible solutions:
- Where does the provider store your data/servers? Are there multiple servers in different locations?
- Will all your data get stored in the cloud, so it is always protected?
- Does the solution have data encryption?
- Does the solution’s solution have verification from a third party?
- Do they have a mobile application?
- Does it have multi-device access?
- Can you access it remotely from any device or web browser?
Is The Solution GDPR Compliant?
- In what ways does the solution address GDPR compliance?
- Does the software have regular and automated updates for security?
Look For Downloads
- Do you have to download software to use the solution? A complete cloud solution can operate entirely on your web browser. No downloads are required.
Good legal cloud software can transform how your firm works, increasing accessibility, security, and scalability. It should also ensure your organization’s compliance with GDPR data security regulations. The only way you can get all of these benefits from your solution is if it hasn’t been cloud-washed.
Want to get started with competent, authentic cloud-based legal software? Contact us today to get all the information you need.