The following is a summary of the blog, The Great Pandemic Leap, which Craig Ball posted in Computer Forensics, E-Discovery, General Technology Posts.

Law firms and courts have made much of the “Great Pandemic Leap.” The Pandemic proved to get lawyers who were not tech-savvy to move forward. The alleged leap had nothing to do with new technology. For example, Zoom and other collaboration tools have been around for a long time. 

No, it wasn’t new technology. Compulsion, adoption, and support enabled the great leap of ‘Ten Years in Ten Weeks.’

  • “Compulsion” because we couldn’t meet face-to-face, and seeing faces (and slides and whiteboards) is essential.
  • “Adoption” because so many embraced Zoom that we suddenly enjoyed a common meeting place.
  • “Support” because getting firms and families up and running on Zoom became a priority.

For Mr. Ball, the Great Leap manifested as the near-universal ability to convene on a platform where screen sharing and remote control were simple. Working from home was made possible with remote control and screen sharing tools to access machines by Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) or TeamViewer.

E-discovery and digital forensics require defensible data identification, preservation, and collection. The Pandemic made deskside reviews and onsite collection virtually impossible, or more accurately, those tasks became possible only virtually. Suddenly, everyone knew how to join a Zoom call, share screens, and hand over remote control of keyboard and mouse. Mr. Ball could record the sessions to document the work and remotely load software to preserve and access mobile devices. Remote control and screen sharing let him target collection efforts based on his judgment and not rely on a custodian’s self-interested actions. Custodians could observe, assist and intervene in his work or they could opt to walk away. Being remote was much less intrusive and spared the expense and hassle of travel. 

Whether you made a great leap or struggled with technical proficiency, it’s great to see you! Hang onto those gains, and seek new ways to leverage technology in your practice. Your life may no longer depend on it, but your future certainly does.

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