Empowering Law: Unleashing Collabora Online for Legal Document Excellence

In our ongoing exploration of how Collabora Online empowers various sectors, we’ve discussed use cases within education, governments, and national defence. Now, let’s turn our attention to the legal world, where accuracy, control, and security are paramount. Collabora Online, our flagship collaborative office suite, continues to prove itself as a versatile and robust solution, aligning seamlessly with the unique needs of the legal profession.

Document Security at Its Core

In the legal realm, confidentiality and document security are non-negotiable. Collabora Online builds a fortress of security around your legal documents. Unlike traditional document editors, where files travel between servers and devices, Collabora Online adopts a server-centric approach. Your documents never leave the secure confines of the server, offering unparalleled control over sensitive legal information. This stands in stark contrast to other document editors such as Microsoft Office, where files are copied in their entirety and sent to users’ browsers for editing, with changes then merged centrally. Collabora Online in effect gives multiple users their own set of unique and trackable pens to work on the same document concurrently, and crucially there isn’t a (metaphorical) photocopier or secretary frantically looking for and merging changes in sight. This all provides legal professionals the assurance they need in an era of increasing data privacy concerns.

Track Every Change, Preserve Every Version

For legal professionals, clarity in document history is indispensable. Collabora Online’s robust version history, redlining, and track changes features are tailored to the meticulous requirements of legal document management. As mentioned above, since the document never leaves the confines of your own on-premise (or trusted hosting partner’s) servers, there is no way for third parties to alter contents without your knowledge. Read-only files stay read only, download permissions are controlled, and any screenshots watermarked with user details to prevent unauthorised sharing – something other browser-based or offline document editing suites struggle to control (as the U.S. Department of Defense recently discovered). Any and all changes can and will be clearly displayed in the document history. Whether it’s scrutinising the evolution of a contract, identifying modifications, or preserving a pristine or unpublished version, Collabora Online offers a comprehensive toolkit for legal practitioners to navigate the complexities of document collaboration with ease.

Genuine Compliance

If you are using Microsoft Office 365 as your document editor, it is becoming increasingly unclear if they are in any way compliant with GDPR regulations, or indeed if they have any intention to comply with the law. This is the conclusion of the latest two-year study carried out by the German privacy regulator DSK (Datenschutzkonferenz). Worryingly, DSK’s accusations are not merely legal nit-picking, but relate to how Microsoft shares data with U.S. authorities. “[Microsoft may] provide disproportionate access rights for U.S. intelligence services and there is no judicial recourse for EU citizens.”1 “To compensate for the fundamental rights inadequacies of [U.S. laws providing extensive access rights to US intelligence services] identified by the European Court of Justice, it would be necessary to take measures to prevent or render ineffective the access of U.S. authorities – and thus Microsoft – to personal data.”2

Whilst the DSK report appears to have public services in mind, and is primarily concerned about schools and other public bodies, for any legal practice these allegations should be sounding serious alarm bells. With a locally hosted Collabora Online deployment, you can be sure your documents will always stay within your local legal jurisdiction, or for maximum control, host your documents on-premise.

Don’t delay

Collabora Online provides a quality solution that meets the rigorous standards legal practice demands. Already in use by government departments, educational institutions, and across the private sector sector, Collabora Online enables legal professionals to focus on their expertise, while handling the legal and security intricacies of document editing and collaborative working.

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  1. Original German: Für die USA hat der EuGH in ‘Schrems II’ festgestellt, dass FISA 702 und E.O. 12333 unverhältnismäßige Zugriffsrechte für US-Geheimdienste vorsehen und für EU-Bürger kein gerichtlicher Rechtsschutz gegeben ist.
  2. Original German: Um die vom EuGH identifizierten am EU-Maßstab gemessenen grundrechtlichen Unzulänglichkeiten von FISA 702 auszugleichen, wäre es erforderlich, Maßnahmen zu ergreifen, die den Zugriff der US-Behörden – und damit von Microsoft – auf personenbezogene Daten verhindern oder ineffektiv machen.


Collabora Online Empowering Series:

Empowering Education: A Smart Choice with Collabora Online

Empowering Governments: Collabora Online and Sovereignty

Empowering National Defence: The Strongest Solution with Collabora Online

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