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Amazon's Digital Assistant Alexa Will Track Your Billable Hours

If you haven't met Alexa yet, you're gonna love her now.

Alexa is Amazon's digital assistant -- and she does more than ever. She started out as a desktop version of Siri, the iPhone know-it-all who responds to voice commands.

Now, thanks to innovation from Thomson Reuters, FindLaw's parent company, Alexa does something only a lawyer could love. She keeps track of billable hours!

Billable Reality

If you thought you were dreaming, you can wake up now. Or you can ask Alexa to wake you up because she does that, too.

You see, Alexa responds to voice commands. So if you say, "Alexa, set my alarm for 6 a.m," she does it. And now if you say, "Alexa, track my time," she does that also.

According to Thomson Reuters, the new program works through its Elite Workspace desktop and allows lawyers to enter and track billable hours by voice commands. It's called Workspace Assistant, and it enables users to access a range of products from desktop and mobile devices.

"Workspace Assistant underscores Elite's commitment to making its clients' working lives easier and to always keeping them up to date with the latest technologies," said Eric Ruud, managing director of Thomson Reuters Legal Enterprise Solutions.

Security, Please

"What about confidentiality?" asked Robert Ambrogi for Law Suites. "Isn't Alexa listening to and recording much of what I say?"

Because Alexa stores information, she has been the subject of subpoenas in recent cases. Like Fitbit, the personal fitness tracker, these smart devices leave digital trails that attorneys can follow in discovery.

For security, the Workspace Assistant routes information through the law firms' firewalls, encryption and other protections. "Alexa listens and interacts with time entry and reporting, but always within the firm's security walls," Ruud said.

Workspace Assistant is a free program that can be downloaded from Amazon's Alexa store. It functions with Elite Workspace, which is Thomson Reuters' management platform for law firms.

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