Maine Board of Overseers of the Bar Opinion #207

Professional Ethics Commission

Topic: The Ethics of Cloud Computing and Storage

Question presented to the Commission:

“Is it ethical for Maine attorneys to use cloud computing and storage for client matters?”

Short answer of the Commission:

“Yes, assuming safeguards are in place to ensure that the attorney’s use of this technology does not result in the violation of any of the attorney’s obligations under the various Maine Rules of Professional Conduct. While the technology is perpetually renewing and reinventing itself, cloud computing triggers the same ethical obligations that lawyers always have owed to their clients. With the expansion of remote data storage and processing services comes the need to observe the same, previously established ethical obligations attorneys always have followed in caring for client information.”

Maine Rules of Professional Conduct: 1.1, 1.3, 1.4, 1.6, 1.15, 1.16, 1.17, 5.3

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