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Law firm "tech support" does a lot more than make sure your Internet is running and software is up to date. In today's firms, technology professionals are an essential part of eDiscovery practice, litigation support, cybersecurity, and -- in the rare firm -- legal innovation.

And these highly-skilled tech workers are in store for a significant raise as more firms realize their worth and demand begins to outstrip supply. It might just be time to give your tech team a raise -- or watch them move elsewhere.

Goodbye Sam Spade, hello digital forensics specialist. Today, when you need to find the "smoking gun" (more often a smoking email or a wiped hard drive), you don't call up your private dick; instead, you meet with your forensics specialist. Digital forensics allows for the investigation and often recovery of materials from digital devices, from personal computers to cell phones to massive servers.

Digital forensics is not the same as eDiscovery. Most eDiscovery looks at active data -- information that is managed and readily available. Digital forensics searches much deeper, allowing the recovery of hidden, damaged or erased information and can reveal significant amounts of information that is otherwise not easily available.

Forget filing your discovery documents away in some basement storage closet or backing them up in piles of external hard drives. Logikcull, the eDiscovery company, is promising that it will reduce discovery archiving to its simplest form: a single drag and drop.

The company is offering one-step, cloud-based data archiving for users of its discovery automation products. That could make archiving as simple as uploading a photo to Facebook and doc review about as complicated as a Google search. And it won't cost you a million dollars either -- Logikcull announced early this August that it's allowing unlimited cloud-based data storage for its customers.

Social media, text messaging, and mobile devices are nothing new, but they are increasingly being integrated into business life. Whether it's recruiting an employee through Twitter, closing a deal via text message, or friending your colleagues on Facebook, our mobile lives are becoming more and more integrated into our work lives.

That means mobile technology is also becoming more central to eDiscovery. Texting, mobile apps, and social media are the "new frontier" in eDiscovery, according to a new report by the law firm Gibson Dunn.

Have you heard about The Cloud? Of course you have. For the last five years or so, cloud computing -- using remote servers, accessible via the Internet, to store, manage and process data -- has been everywhere. There's cloud-based apps, cloud-based accounting, even cloud-based operating systems of sorts.

What there hasn't been much of is cloud-based eDiscovery. Two new start ups are focused on changing that, offering electronic discovery services built from the ground up to take advantage of the scalability, processing power, and lower cost of cloud computing.

The Best Scanner Under $300

The paperless office. Like the flying car and the sassy robot sidekick, it's something we've been promised for years, but something science has consistently failed to deliver.

Lawyers are up to their ears in paper as much as they ever were, and while our tablets and iDevices let us browse stuff without paper, we've got to cram all those documents in there somehow. That's where a scanner comes in -- but what kind should you get?

Sit back and let us regale you with our scanner story.

Lawyers and Metadata: Navigating an Ethical Minefield

"Metadata" entered the lexicon thanks to the Edward Snowden revelations, prompting explainers on what the heck it is. The prefix "meta" is self-referential; metadata is data about data. To put it in a less confusing way, metadata is extraneous information about data.

You've got a document, and the content of the document -- the words -- are the data. But the document also contains other information about the data, like who authored the document and when it was created, and what parts of the text are underlined. This hidden data can present an entirely separate set of ethical problems.

Sen. Orrin Hatch Proposes Changes to Obtaining Data Stored Abroad

The Justice Department, Microsoft, and Ireland are still locked in a showdown over which country's laws control the fairly common modern situation of a company's data being physically stored abroad.

Ars Technica reports that Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) plans to reintroduce the Law Enforcement Access to Data Stored Abroad Act, which would limit the government's ability to access foreign-stored data.

Fitbits, Wearable Tech, and the Impending E-Discovery Deluge

Hey, everyone! Above the Law is sponsoring an e-discovery quiz! You can enter your email address at the end to be entered to win a Fitbit.

Which got us wondering: It's kind of odd (or maybe it's by design) that a Fitbit is the prize for an e-discovery quiz. The e-discovery revolution begun in the late '90s continues unabated, but wearable data-collecting devices like the Fitbit present a new and interesting problem for electronic discovery.

The Latest in 'Technology Will Make Lawyers Obsolete!'

Wow, we weren't even three days into the new year before we got the latest in "The machines are taking our jobs!" And I don't just mean in general, I mean specifically lawyers. Every year, we're reminded that our judgment can be mimicked by a computer.

Emphasis on can be. Well, more like could be. Well, more like "it's theoretically possible, but it's expensive and still not as good as a lawyer."