This is a lesson for attorneys and the public as a whole.
CNNMoney reported today that Dropbox had a security breach which allowed visitors, for a limited amount of time, to use any password to log into a customer’s account. The link to the article is here: http://money.cnn.com/2011/06/22/technology/dropbox_passwords/index.htm?iid=HP_LN. Dropbox is a cloud-based storage site that allows users to move documents, photos, etc., into a folder that can be shared across multiple computers, iPads, etc.
Lawyers have good reason to be concerned about this type of security breach as sensitive documents could literally be viewed by other people. Such a breach could potentially result in the inadvertent disclosure of attorney-client communications or other privileged documents. Lawyers should take care to protect these documents as much as possible.
Cloud computing has many benefits including the swift exchange of documents (even remotely) and the ability to share items almost instantaneously. However, until there is sufficient encryption to protect sensitive documents, it is probably best to avoid the cloud. Until such time, cloud only those documents that are irrelevant to prying eyes.