IntApp Testifies Before American Bar Association on Confidentiality and Information Risk Management

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IntApp Risk Practice invited to testify on confidentiality and lawyers' use of technology before ABA Ethics 20/20 Commission Working Group on the Implications of New Technologies.

IntApp, Inc., the leading provider of confidentiality management software for law firms, today announced that it provided testimony before the American Bar Association's Ethics 20/20 Commission on the issue: "Client Confidentiality and Lawyers' Use of Technology."

The ABA 20/20 Commission is charged with reviewing ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct and other regulatory rules affecting law firms in order to develop policy recommendations in response to changes in technology and global legal practices. On September 20, the Commission's Working Group on the Implications of New Technologies published an issue paper for comment on changing confidentiality management practices and challenges. It highlighted questions presented by the growth of electronic information management technology, noting:

"When data was strictly in hard copy form, lawyers could easily discern how to satisfy their professional obligations and did not need elaborate ethical guidance. Now that data is predominantly in electronic form, however, the necessary precautions are more difficult to identify."

The ABA invited IntApp to provide testimony at an Ethics 20/20 Commission hearing held October 14, in Chicago, Illinois. At the hearing, Brian Lynch, IntApp Risk Practice Group Director, explored how technology creates new information risk management challenges for law firms, which face an expanding and evolving set of confidentiality drivers. These drivers include ethical screens necessitated by lateral hires, more stringent client outside counsel guidelines, and regulations such as the HITECH Act, ITAR and several data privacy laws.

"Given the growing volume of information stored electronically, more and more firms are using search software internally, dramatically increasing the chance that sensitive information, previously thought obscured from internal eyes, will be accessed inappropriately," said Brian Lynch, Director, Risk Practice, IntApp. "Importantly, confidentiality breaches typically don't stem from malfeasance, with so much information and so many policies to keep track of, human error is usually the biggest risk to control."

Testifying before the ABA Commission, Mr. Lynch drew on his industry experience and perspective as the chair of the Risk Roundtable's Compliance Consortium. The Roundtable program brings together a mix of law firm risk management professionals, providing a forum for cross-functional dialogue, education and advocacy. The Compliance Consortium is a working group charged with exploring issues specifically tied to existing and emerging confidentiality issues affecting law firms, and developing industry response guidelines.

"The ABA is to be commended on investing in initiatives like the Commission on Ethics 20/20, which work to help law firms respond to a changing marketplace," said Pat Archbold, head of IntApp's Risk Practice Group. "We're proud to support their efforts by leveraging our deep experience working with law firms to address their information risk challenges through education, training and confidentiality management technology."

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