IndyBar: Drive Safe: Cloud Data Storage Is Not Backup

Jared Correia

By Jared Correia, IndyBar Law Practice Management Consultant, Red Cave Legal Consulting

As much as I advocate for the use of cloud software by law firms, sometimes lawyers can develop an over reliance on such tools.

Take, for example, cloud document storage. If you’re a law firm and you’ve recently moved to a paperless office, adding your document files to a cloud drive system (like Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive or Dropbox) may seem like the solution to all your problems. It’s certainly a huge step in the right direction but remember that a cloud drive does not a data backup make.

Storing your files online does not create a data backup. If you think of a data backup as a redundancy (another place where your information is stored) solely using a cloud drive for document storage does not answer for that. You still need to back up your cloud drive data somewhere else. And this isn’t about Google or Microsoft or Amazon’s server architecture going down in flames — if that happens, we’ve all got real problems— it’s more about creating an alternate pathway to your data. What if you need a particular file when your document servers are offline for maintenance? What if there’s an extended power outage and you can’t get to your files on the web?

Ideally, you would add multiple backups for your data: a cloud backup pointed at your cloud storage system (look at Carbonite, Backblaze, CrashPlan) as well as a hard drive you can access offline that you update regularly (ioSafe has great hard drives).

These days, backup is not just about getting back what you’ve lost; it’s also about having various channels to access your client data as the situation dictates.•

Need help backing that cache up? Call us! If you need to look beyond traditional hiring methodologies, we can help. The IndyBar offers FREE law practice management consulting services through Red Cave Law Firm Consulting. To request a consult, go to indybar.org/lpm and start running your law firm like a business.

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