Key Insights from ABA TECHSHOW 2024: Embracing Tech Trends and Cybersecurity Imperatives

The ABA TECHSHOW, held in Chicago from February 14-17, 2024, was a melting pot of insights, innovations, and imperative discussions on the intersection of technology and law. As legal professionals met to explore the latest trends and tools, our PMAP team identified several overarching themes that emerged from the diverse array of presentations and discussions. Here are some key takeaways.

Top TECHSHOW Takeaways

Top takeaways from the ABA TECHSHOW® and EXPO, discussing everything from emerging trends and thought leadership in legal technology, to new product releases and demonstrations.

Using Video to Support Internal Office Processes

If a picture is worth a thousand words, a one-minute video equals 1.8 million words. This article will discuss three ways to use video to run a better practice, reduce potential malpractice, and improve your bottom line. It will conclude with a step-by-step tutorial on how to make videos for your staff in Microsoft Teams (included free in the Microsoft Office 365 Suite).

Billing Software: Explore your Options

The type of program you use to track your time and calculate your bills will vary depending on your specific practice and firm goals. In focusing on software for billing, you have your choice of options, but you should consider the variety of features available when making the decision which to use for your practice.

Working from Home? Make Your Internet Work for You

Many of us are more reliant than ever before on the stability and speed of our internet connection, now that the pandemic has forced us to work from home and many children are engaged in remote learning. If your home internet connection is not performing at the level necessary to support your needs, consider the options below to make it work for you.

Working Remotely: The Takeaway

We are now three months in to what is, for many of us, this brave new world of remote work. For some, it has been a resoundingly successful experiment. Some lawyers who previously worked out of traditional law offices have made a smooth transition to working out of their homes – and may never look back, opting instead to take their practices paperless or work remotely all or part of the time.

Collaborative Word Processing

With the spread of COVID-19 and resulting changes in how we conduct business, we need methods for exchanging information in different ways. In particular, attorneys need secure methods to collaborate on Word documents with both their clients and colleagues. This collaboration could include simply gathering information from clients with an intake form, review and approval of a document by a client or supervisor, or more complex collaboration involving multiple versions and tracked changes.

Working and Meeting in the Age of Social Distancing

In light of the spread of COVID-19, many lawyers are looking for ways to continue meeting with their clients and other parties while keeping some distance from them. Fortunately, we are in an age where technology makes it easy to implement social distancing efforts that many individuals and businesses are now undertaking. This blog post will cover two tools that will allow lawyers to work and maintain social distance: (1) video conferencing and (2) remote access.

Remote Access for Lawyers: Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) and Virtual Private Network (VPN)

As lawyers embrace the trend to work offsite, remote access becomes an important tool. Remote access refers to the ability of one computer to remotely access information on another computer or network. This functionality lets lawyers access their applications, folders, and files on their work computer while working from home or somewhere offsite.

Notetaking Outside the Office

You’ve probably faced this scenario: You’re out of the office and you receive an email or phone call from a client or third party and have no access to a pen and paper to take notes. Many options are available that can assist with notetaking when you're working outside the office.

Using Outlook to Save Google Emails

If you are a lawyer using Gmail in your law practice and want or need to save your client emails, here is a tip to help you do this. It requires you to have Microsoft Outlook with Adobe Acrobat PDFMaker add-on. With these two programs, you can convert an Outlook email folder including all attachments into a single PDF document.

Options for Sending Large Files

Many lawyers who don’t consider themselves “paperless” still prefer to electronically send documents to their clients or other parties. Most lawyers accomplish this task by using their email program. Email works great when the file is small. But it’s not as easy when the file is large. Most email programs allow users to send an attachment up to 10 MB, and a few others may stretch the limit to 25 MB. Here are some options for sending large files.

Microsoft Office 2007 and Beyond

Microsoft Office is a staple for many law firms and every version offers customer support. Yet support ends a certain period of time after release of the product. Office 2007 support ended on October 10, 2017. If you still use Office 2007 or an earlier version, you may be putting yourself at higher risk for malpractice claims or disciplinary issues now that your system is no longer supported by regular security updates.

Video: How to Use Quick Steps in Outlook

This short video shows you how to save time by using Outlook’s “quick step” feature for tasks like making appointments and sending emails to groups. PLF Practice Management Advisor Hong Dao gives you step-by-step instructions for making use of this quick and useful function.

Is Microsoft Office 365 a Good Bet for 2018?

Lawyers don't have the resources, time, or money to jump on the latest technology product or service for the mere sake of being an early adopter or follower of the crowd. We frequently only stop to consider the what and how and forget the why: does the product or service facilitate providing better legal services to the client in the most efficient manner?

Anatomy of a Ransomware Attack: One Firm’s Story

Imagine you post an ad on craigslist to hire a legal assistant. Someone immediately responds by email and attaches a zip file. Believing the file contains the applicant’s resume and cover letter, you click on the attachment and download it to your server. Soon afterward, you can’t access any files on your computer. You have just been infected by ransomware.

Copying and Pasting from a PDF

As of August 1, 2017, Uniform Trial Court Rule (UTCR) 21.040(1) is amended to require that a document submitted electronically, whether as a PDF or PDF/A, must allow for copying and pasting text into another document, as much as practicable. The goal of the amendment is to conform the UTCR to the Oregon Rules of Appellate Procedure, which already require electronically filed documents to include the ability to copy and paste.