Geraci Law is a well‐established law practice with over 100 staff and Associates, and over 10,000 new clients every year. “We have almost 30,000 open files at any given time, and handle over 400,000 phone calls, with an equal number of electronic contacts” said founding member attorney Peter Francis Geraci.
Geraci Law used to use email heavily. However, in recent years, the danger of malware invading a company’s computer system has increased. Geraci Law experienced two different incidents of employees opening email attachments, which resulted in the individual CPU becoming a robot, and starting to encrypt files to hold them hostage for ransom payments. Through the use of monitoring software, the unusual CPU activity of the attacked computer was detected within minutes, so that the attacked was neutralized. The firm decided to act promptly to prevent future attacks.
“We have always been a leader in software development for contact management and law office practice management”, said Mr. Geraci. “So we decided to be very proactive when faced with these new electronic threats.”
The solution was to bar use of email, whether Outlook or Gmail, incoming or outgoing, and most situations. This required creation of a client portal, which Geraci Law called client corner. This provides a secure portal for clients to communicate. No email is necessary: all the client needs is an Internet connection and a cell phone. Clients may upload documents, or even simply snap a photo of a document on their cell phone and upload that.
Since the portal is secure, there is no danger of an attachment containing malware entering the Geraci Law system.
Mr. Geraci also found that texting clients is far superior to use of email, since even clients who claim they have email don’t bother to check it. Everyone, Geraci said, now has a smart phone.
There are very few integrated contact manager software systems available commercially, and Geraci said that he has found none that suit the firm’s needs. “Most are very primitive, hard to use, and are either single purpose systems, or failed to integrate accounting, scheduling, contact management, document processing, ease‐of‐use, human resources, intranet, VoIP integration, and the other modules of a successful contact management system”
The proprietary Geraci Law product, called GapNet, (for Geraci Automated Process) is not available, and is currently protected as a trade secret. “It would give another law firm to grade a competitive advantage to make the product commercially available at this point”, Geraci said, “but we are working toward a revised product that would be a breakthrough in client contact management software.”
While various cloud‐based products are becoming more and more popular, Geraci Law maintains its own servers, as well as its own off‐site backup. “We hope to continue the success of our law firm, with the cutting‐edge work of our IT team, and to continue delivering high quality legal services at the lowest cost, through innovative technical achievements” said Geraci.