cleanDocs for metadata removal enables law firms of all sizes to protect client data and to meet industry standards

Published on May 1, 2015 by kerryc
When John Kang set up his solo law practice, he wanted access to the same specialist applications the larger firms used so he could provide his clients with the same level of security and service. Discover how cleanDocs enabled him to protect their private data from accidental information leaks … John C. Kang is the sole shareholder of Kang P.C., located in Aliso Viejo, California. His firm has extensive experience in all aspects of commercial acquisitions, developments, and the formation of appropriate business entities designed to facilitate growth. Kang P.C. focuses on the areas of commercial real estate and business transactions, including development, financing, leasing, acquisition and disposition of commercial and industrial properties.

The business challenge

John Kang had worked at larger law firms and recognized the need for specialist applications for document comparison and metadata management. When he set up his own law firm, he wanted to have the same technology available to him so he could offer his clients the same level of security and service. He used the DocsCorp pdfDocs product for creating, collating and editing PDF content, and compareDocs for document comparison. To complete the round up of specialist applications, John used Payne’s Metadata Assistant product to remove metadata from documents. In 2014, DocsCorp released cleanDocs—a breakthrough technology that enables law firms to deploy a metadata management solution that delivers on speed, flexibility and control to protect against accidental information and metadata leaks. cleanDocs removes more than 100 metadata types from MS Office, PDF and ZIP files in microseconds. John decided to replace Metadata Assistant. As John recalls at the time “the cleanDocs price point and ability to deploy on a smaller scale meant I could afford the same level of technology as the big firms, and offer the same level of service. I could protect their data and meet industry standards.” He also saw the benefit of consolidating his technology with a single technology partner—particularly a partner with whom he had a good relationship. The clean, simple user interface common to all the DocsCorp products certainly made the decision to switch easier and presented less of a learning curve. Everything John needed could be found on a single screen. He could determine the level of cleaning and whether to send in native format or in PDF. The ability to convert to PDF on the clean and send screen saves John a significant amount of time, and is one of his favorite features.

Our solution

The underlying technology in all metadata management applications currently on the market requires the cleaning application to open the authoring application every time to clean the document. This process can take about 10 seconds per document. For desktop users, this means they have to wait until cleaning is complete before they can resume working with email. On the server, bottlenecks are created as emails leaving the company are cleaned. The side effect to this is that users do not know exactly when the email was sent, or what the final sent email looked like as there is no synchronization between the person’s Sent email and the server. cleanDocs cleans documents at sub-second speeds, eliminating bottlenecks and lost productivity. It is able to achieve these blistering speeds through binary level and multi-thread processing. Binary level processing – cleanDocs does not need to open the authoring application. In fact, the user does not need to have the application. Instead, cleanDocs analyzes and cleans the documents at the binary or direct file level. Multi-thread processing – cleanDocs also takes full advantage of multi-thread processing, supporting all available cores. For example, on an 8-core CPU it can process up to 8 documents at a time to make light work of large batch cleaning operations. cleanDocs supports 4, 8, 16 and 32 CPU cores.

Other benefits

cleanDocs consists of two modules - cleanDocs Desktop and cleanDocs Mobile. They can be deployed independently or together for a more comprehensive metadata management solution. For the first time mobile users get the same experience as desktop users – sync’ing with Sent Items, immediate feedback, contextual cleaning, and speed. With a server-side solution every document gets cleaned without exception. It doesn’t accommodate any contextual cleaning based on business or end user requirements. By contrast, cleanDocs Mobile allows mobile users to interact with cleaning policies to make cleaning decisions and to input passwords when required to ensure all documents are cleaned immediately. Emails sent from mobile devices or tablets and cleaned by cleanDocs are synchronized with the user’s Sent Items folder so they know the message has been sent as well as having a copy of what was sent for the record. cleanDocs Desktop and Mobile work together. This means that emails are cleaned only once. For example, emails that had been cleaned on the desktop by cleanDocs Desktop, would not be cleaned again if forwarded from a mobile device. Instead, it would be sent immediately. cleanDocs supports iOS, Android, Blackberry and Windows Phone.

In summary

Metadata management is crucial for law firms to protect themselves and their clients from accidental or unintentional information leaks. In 2014 John Kang of Kang P.C. decided to replace Payne’s Metadata Assistant with cleanDocs, which enabled him to consolidate technology partners. Kang P.C. was also using the DocsCorp pdfDocs and compareDocs applications. The common user interface significantly reduced his learning curve. Importantly, cleanDocs provided speed, flexibility and control over the metadata cleaning process, ensuring regulatory compliance and reducing financial and reputational risk of disclosing confidential or sensitive client information.