is your dropbox secure? viivo can make it so

Today’s post is part of a series appearing weekly about an application we think every lawyer should have in her toolbox.

You may or may not be using cloud storage/syncing apps in your practice. There are many pros and cons - security being the primary one for attorneys (IMHO). Personally, I think the pros (like access from any device, and ease of sharing and collaboration) far outweigh the cons. Especially if you take appropriate measures to protect your data.

Encryption of files is an easy way to solve (or at least substantially ameliorate) the security issue. You can secure files on your hard drive (with this or this or any of these). Or, if you’re using Dropbox, you can use Viivo to create an encrypted folder within Dropbox on your hard drive. The service currently is free for both personal and commercial use.

Viivo also provides its legal info in an easy-to-find spot, including terms of use and privacy policy. (You should read this information and understand what it means if you’re going to use Viivo. Again, IMHO.)

During install, the app explained clearly how encryption occurs:

As well as how to share an file encrypted with Viivo:

There’s also a handy quick start guide here.

So far, I like the ease of use - especially important for busy attorneys who may not take the time to use (or even figure out how to use) more complicated encryption software.

And while my state’s bar (TN) has yet to say so, I think it’s quite possible (and reasonable?) that our ethical obligations eventually will require us to encrypt data before storing in the cloud. Regardless, with apps like Viivo, it is so easy to do so. I can’t think of a good reason not to, actually.

NOTE TO MAC USERS: I was unable to download Viivo from the website link. Javascript issue, I think. I could see the download path when I clicked, however. So I took a screen shot of it, and manually entered it into the nav bar. Voila! Download started instantly.

Here’s the path: http://pkware.cachefly.net/products/viivo/mac/VIIVO-Mac-1.01.0026.dmg

[I also note that support appears to be minimal - or rather, non-existent. No contact info appears on the support page (or anywhere else that I could find). There’s a users’ forum, but not a lot of action there. Other than the download hiccup, I’ve had no issues, but it’s not clear who will help, if I do. However, the app is free. You get what you pay for?]

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