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Lance N. Rea CIO of Baker Donelson (from left), Brad Bragg of Womble Bond Dickinson and Christopher P. McDaniel CIO of Smith, Gambrell & Russell. (Courtesy photos) Lance N. Rea CIO of Baker Donelson (from left), Brad Bragg of Womble Bond Dickinson and Christopher P. McDaniel CIO of Smith, Gambrell & Russell. (Courtesy photos)

Late January 2020: Chris McDaniel was discussing cybersecurity at a conference in Phoenix when he and other law firm chief information officers started receiving eerily similar emails from their bosses. The message was simple but profound: the novel coronavirus was spreading, so please prepare for everyone in the firm to work from home.

“Holy shit,” McDaniel remembers thinking. Then he and his 15-member team at Atlanta-based Smith Gambrell & Russell got to work planning how nearly 450 people could remotely access the firm’s network.

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Jonathan Ringel

Jonathan Ringel is managing editor of the Daily Report, the ALM newspaper in Atlanta. He can be reached at [email protected] Twitter: @jonathanringel

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