The impact of technology on our lives has increased manifold. There hardly remains a sphere of life that is completely unaffected by technology and its many implementations. One of the industries that has been slow towards accepting technology with all its might was the legal industry. The importance of humans being present and functioning with independent intellectual capabilities is the crux of the legal system. Having said that, it is unrealistic to assume that the industry would remain far away from technology while the world around is changing dramatically. The role of technology has been steadily increasing in the legal industry. However, the question of how and in what ways technology can be integrated seamlessly in the practice of law remains a principal concern for stakeholders involved. The innovation in the legal industry is largely a factor of two aspects — predictive analytics and machine learning. Apart from these two technologies; law firms, corporate legal departments, and law schools are attracted to one premiere technology that is known as blockchain.
Why the technology of blockchain is on the rise
Blockchain is the epitome of democratisation of information. One of the core values of blockchain is the fact that it facilitates the information database to be shared directly with multiple stakeholders, without having to operate from a central administrating system. The decentralised design of blockchain technology is a major cause of it being highly secure. Databases that are stored and run by one single administrator always have the risk of being compromised since those who want to jeopardise the system know where the foundation lies. It also to be noted that the consequent security of the base administrator in terms of firewalls and other preventive technology would require a heavy investment of resources; by decentralising the system one can effectively save the databases from being corrupted. Blockchain also works on a system where cryptography is used to encrypt and secure all forms information in the database. The cryptography allows the system to be shared freely but saves it from the dangers of being tampered with. Only individuals who have the code for the cryptographic security system can alter the databases; thus empowering the users by reducing the number of people that can modify databases. The absolute authority of a select few to change the information stored in the databases also makes the entire system exponentially safe then anything we currently use in the public domain. The data stored in blockchain systems are characterised as complete, reliable, exact, and easily accessible. The decentralised form also provides the databases reduced points of failure; therefore, blockchain can render the databases the ability to remain intact for longer periods of time while continuously being dependable. Another major feature of blockchain is its ability to provide transparency. Information sets stored in public blockchain databases also all stakeholders to view and monitor all changes made in the database. The transparency is complemented by the fact that information in blockchain databases are immutable for everyone that do not have the key to the encryption used.
Thus, blockchain allows the transparent public sharing of information — that is certifiably reliable — without risking the database to attacks and unauthorized modifications.
Legal Industry Adopting Blockchain
Blockchain has proved itself to be an effective form of peer-to-peer sharing platform. This has immense value in the legal industry which is dependent on sharing of information over a large populace. Blockchain has been proved to be a reliable way of storing information for long durations without fearing any form of tampering.
The legal industry is a space where the stakeholders are many. As a result, most documents are often required to be shared with a large pool of individuals. The public sharing of documents also expose the document to the risks of being corrupted over time. Blockchain provides an effective defense for this fear. The legal industry is likely to thrive because it can freely share information, giving lawyers extensive access to case studies to use as references for their current cases; and enabling law students an unending stream of information and data to learn from before they enter the profession. The implications of blockchain technology are immense and range widely for the legal industry.
There are other possibilities of how blockchain can transform the legal industry. The technology is just over a decade old and is already promising to be the next big thing in information management. While we must still tread lightly and observe the development of the system over the next few decades; the presence of blockchain in multiple walks of life is inevitable. The legal industry might raise the scope of blockchain within the legal system to include aspects such as self-sovereign identity, and streamlined judicial and administrative processes. Law firms and the legal industry, at large, are transforming with the world. While it remains a field where the human intellect can never be completely replaced, there are aspects of it that can be effectively managed by technology. And, the public nature of the industry makes blockchain the most logical option.
The impact of technology on the legal industry is only increasing. Tech-savvy law firms along with new crop of legal professionals, who have hardly been consciously aware of a world where everything is not available in their palms through smart device, will make it impossible for the legal industry to continue function as they do — being heavily dependent on physical and non-digital forms of information sharing.
But, the public nature of the industry and an extensive number of stakeholders make the security of the information a core concern. Therefore, the technology of blockchain will address all the concerns of the industry while being a viable alternative for it to adopt universally.
About Fusion Informatics
The idea and implication of blockchain, for the uninitiated, are confusing in the least. The technology even while being in its nascent stages have shown immense potential and promise for a future where it will become inevitable. Fusion Informatics expertise in seeing futuristic solutions to current day problems and blockchain is an expected direction to follow. Fusion Informatics is determined to help our clients effectively navigate the encrypted mazes of blockchain.