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Posts tagged as “SC Bar”

Practice Management Assistance Program’s 12 Days of Practical & Technical Gifts (2018 Edition)

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Sometimes searching for the perfect gift can be rather difficult, especially if you don’t have time to do the research.

That’s why, every year, the South Carolina Bar Practice Management Assistance Program produces an annual “Practical and Technical Gift” list for legal professionals. This year’s list focuses on practical and technical products that are portable, purposeful and productive:

  1. Microsoft – Surface Pro 6 – 12.3” Touch-Screen- Intel Core i7 – 8 GB Memory – A laptop and tablet combined into one; a favorite among many legal and technology professionals.
  2. Powercap LED Lighted Beanie – Do you like to exercise outdoors? This powercap LED lighted beanie contains a wearable hands-free flashlight that illuminates areas up to 72 feet.
  3. Bose Soundlink Micro Portable Bluetooth Speaker –Looking for a speaker to hear music from a smartphone or phone calls better? This waterproof portable speaker gets high reviews on Best Buy and Amazon.
  4. Philips Wake-Up Light Alarm Clock with Colored Sunrise Simulation – Sleep better and wake up refreshed. This fancy light therapy alarm clock uses simulation technology to allow the user to experience the modeling of a real phenomenon such as sunrise and sunset and increase performance optimization. It also comes with a back-up alarm in the event of a power failure.
  5. Felt Letter Boards – A fun addition to any office or home.
  6. Smart Mat – This mat pairs with Women’s Health Yoga on Amazon Alexa, is 4” longer than the average yoga mat and contains 5mm thick cushioning to protect your knees.
  7. SeniTurn – If someone on your gift list loves to cycle, walk, or run at dark, this safety indicator is a good gift idea.
  8. Bagsmart Travel Universal Cable Organizer – this organizer contains several pockets, inserts, and enclosures for various electronic accessories.
  9. Dymo LabelWriter 450 Thermal Label Printer – this handy little label printer is an office must-have. Print one label or multiple labels at a time including mailing labels, file labels, shipping labels, etc.
  10. SuperNova 300 Lumens Ultra Bright LED Camping and Emergency Lantern – this lantern is a great tool to have in the office emergency kit when there is a power outage.
  11. Law Firm Themed Gifts – looking for that perfect law-office / lawyer themed gift? Here are a few ideas to check out.
  12. Palmetto State Gifts and Experiences – don’t know what to get that person who has everything? Shop local from South Carolina artisans and businesses.

Look for other ideas from The Digital Edge PodcastTechRepublic and WorldMarket.  Contact pmap@scbar.org for assistance.

Head in the Cloud…How to Migrate to Cloud Storage

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Are you thinking of replacing your office server with cloud storage?

Guess what? You are not alone!

Almost half of solo and small firms are investigating the same thing. But where do you begin?

Find answers to these questions, plus more, in this article by Catherine Sanders Reach, (Director of Law Practice Management and Technology, Chicago Bar Association) entitled:  “What Flavor of Cloud Storage Should I Use?”. Also, review this article by Robert Ambrogi, recent recipient of New England’s highest journalist honor, the Yankee Quill,  to help you interview cloud providers.

Do you have additional questions or need further assistance? Contact pmap@scbar.org.

How to Take Advantage of Member Benefits, Discounts, Webinars & Demos

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Did you know most companies who have law practice management or technology products or services offer them to South Carolina Bar members at a discount through South Carolina Bar member benefits? Many also offer free webinars and demonstrations on a monthly basis where they share about a specific topic affecting law firms or product/service updates.

Here are a few quick tips on how to take advantage of these opportunities:

Visit the PMAP webinars page for the latest information in monthly webinars and demonstrations. SC Bar members are allowed to choose one webinar/demo to attend or all of them. The choice is yours! CLE credit is not available.

Check out the wide variety of member benefits available to SC Bar members. Benefits include insurance and finance, discounts on office products and services, discounts on software productstravelretail and entertainment, and wellness. For more information about these member benefits, contact Charmy Medlin at (803)799-6653.

BONUS TIP: Visit the Lawsites blog for the latest updates in law practice management software and technology vendors.

Do you have practice management or technology questions? Contact pmap@scbar.org for assistance.

How Safe are your Mobile Apps?

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Did you know there are over two million apps to choose from in the iPhone app and Google Play stores?

With that many options, it can be difficult for you to pick which apps are worth your time. Time.com shares the 25 Best Apps of the Year and PC Mag provides their 100 best Android and iPhone picks.

But, wait a minute! Before you download any of those apps (or apps that may be on your checklist to download), make sure to follow these tips to test whether each app is trustworthy and secure:

  1. Have you downloaded a security app that scans new apps for safety? If not, check out Sophos Mobile Security, Trend Micro, or Lookout.
  2. Make sure the "marketplace" is trustworthy. How do you know?
    1. Terms of Service are well written and developed.
    2. The marketplace/developer includes clear contact information and a troubleshooting frequently asked questions (FAQs) list if there is a problem.
    3. The marketplace follows strict app criteria.
    4. The developer provides regular updates to outdated apps.
    5. The marketplace removes vendors who do not meet this criterion in numbers one through four.
  3. Know the source. Never download an app outside of the iPhone or Google play store. Double check the "maker" is the trusted source. Third party apps from websites (outside of the iPhone or Google Play store) may contain hidden links or hijacking code.
  4. ALWAYS read the terms of service to see what rights and permissions you give the app.
  5. Pay attention to app ratings and the number of times the app has been downloaded.
  6. Check user reviews or comments to discover if there are any red flags or issues to be aware of.
  7. If an app offers a paid version, consider buying that version over the "free" version. The paid version is less likely to contain malware and phishing code behind it AND the terms of service (that you check or sign) may allow the company to access your data (photos, text messages, contacts, phone calls, location, etc.)
  8. Once the app is downloaded, click on the app settings to evaluate privacy, security, and general settings. Always change privacy and security settings from the default setting. Also, turn off any permissions you do not want the app to have access to (like photos, phone messages, text messages, location, contacts, etc.)
  9. Regularly re-evaluate apps you have downloaded on your phone. It is a best practice to minimize the number of apps that you download and regularly ask yourself, "have I used this app in the last week or month?" If the answer is no, delete it right away. Mobile apps that you do not open or pay attention to are likely to be targeted by hackers and cyber phishers.
  10.   Be careful downloading games and fun apps (coders love to hide some of the most malicious code where they know people will go for downtime/fun).

Remember your smartphone stores data like all your other devices. "Care" what you "Share!" Email pmap@scbar.org if you need assistance.

Do You Have a Contingency Plan?

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There’s no time like the present to think about your contingency plan.

Sometimes, it’s hard to write a succession plan because you don't like to think about being dead or disabled. However, it is imperativechanging and something all lawyers can do per Law Practice.orgManaging Law Firm Transition and Rule 1.19 of the S.C. Rules of Professional Conduct.

At a minimum, write a letter to your paralegal or the attorney who would mind your office explaining to them what they would need to know if you were outside of service on a long vacation. Then, make an emergency plan should you become disabled, incapacitated or not able to act inside your practice again. Print the Preparation Checklist to plan accordingly. Fill out this form to add your successor(s) to the registry maintained by the Bar. Finally, use this Agreement to Close a Law Practice as a model agreement between you and your successor(s).

There’s no better time to plan than now!

If you have questions or would like more information on succession planning, contact the Practice Management Assistance Program.