To those not immersed in changing legal trends, it might seem odd that law publications everywhere are harping about technology, especially beyond litigation and regulatory matters. Yet part of the reason that topics like cybersecurity, shadow IT and even tweets are so often discussed at length is that they’re rapidly redefining the role of the lawyer.

Take it from Mark Ohringer, general counsel at professional services group Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL), who thinks cyber risk is “probably the biggest risk” facing companies today. And this digital dilemma has much to do with human error: Many people, he said, click strange links or respond emails ostensibly from an institution like the bank and give their credentials over to nefarious actors.

So what does this have to do with the lawyer? In Ohringer’s view, lawyers may eventually stop “waiting until the bad stuff happens and cleaning up afterword,” and instead use technology to prevent breaches from happening in the first place. But this calls for a fundamental change in the way lawyers are generally view technology.

“How should we all think about the disruption that’s all around us, and what does it mean for our own jobs and our teams?” Ohringer said to LTN at ALM’s Legalweek: The Experience event. “How are we going to respond and do it in a way where we’re not scared about [technology], but are actually using [it]?”

Ohringer said in his own company, keeping technology front of mind has to do with client expectations, as well as a company culture that allows for collaboration and idea sharing between the legal department and the technology team. In doing so, he added, his department will often hear of tools getting developed on the business end that are also useful for the law department.

In our video interview, Ohringer talks staying ahead of the curve when it comes to tech adoption, working with other departments, and the cyber risks facing companies today:

Contact Ian Lopez at On Twitter: @IanMichaelLopez.
Contact Gabrielle Orum Hernndez On Twitter: @GMOrumhernandez.