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The importance of strong passwords

posted by: INSZoom date: Apr 14, 2015 Data security comments: Comments Off on The importance of strong passwords
Strengthen passwords to minimize the potential for cyberattacks.

Lawyers work with confidential and sensitive client information every day, which means they need to take precautions to keep this data safe. Many high-profile data breaches have occurred in the past few years, exposing millions of people to the risks of compromised data, including identity theft. Along with tightening a firm's online security, lawyers should create stronger passwords and encourage their clients to do the same.

It's often difficult to keep track of the growing number of accounts and passwords attorneys use every day. Many professionals try to create a shortcut by using the same password for everything, or even worse, setting passwords as simple words or numeral combinations such as "12345" or "password." A report from Verizon revealed 76 percent of security breaches  happened after hackers used stolen user credentials to access a company's system, which is easier when employees don't use strong passwords.

More accounts mean higher risks of data breaches
Sony Pictures Entertainment's December data breach was a high-profile example of the importance of stronger passwords. Hackers erased data from the organization's systems, released previously unavailable movies to the public and revealed employees' private information, salaries and other sensitive documents. Among the released information was a list of employees' passwords, which included weak safeguards such as "password" and "s0ny123," according to Mashable. Employees' computers contained home addresses, current salaries and even credit card numbers, which were exposed in the cyberattack. 

Imagine the information hackers could expose by accessing private legal files.

Cyberattacks in the legal industry
Law firms don't have the same obligation to report cyberattacks as consumer companies, but a preventable hack may be a breach of confidentiality. Attorneys need to ensure they utilize more complex passwords to mitigate this risk.

Firms may not think they are vulnerable, but many hacks occur simply because there is an opportunity, Lawyerist said. Cybercriminals run scans for weaknesses on any computer connected to the Internet and have many ways to access computers. Lawyerist reported an attorney lost $289,000 by clicking on an attachment in a scam email. The attachment contained a virus that allowed cybercriminals to view everything on the computer. The lawyer later accessed the firm's bank account from the same computer, giving the hackers an easy way to transfer the large sum to another account. Additionally, the firm's bank refused to cover the loss. 

Weak passwords open the door for significant risks.Weak passwords open the door for significant risks.

Although cybercriminals have multiple ways to infiltrate computers, low-tech methods of identity theft are still common. Lawyers are at a heightened risk for data or financial losses if a bank statement is swiped from the trash or a wallet or laptop is stolen. In particular, a stolen work laptop is a substantial risk. Not only does it have the firm's account information on it, but it also has clients' banking data if they pay online.

How to protect sensitive information
Passwords don't need to be 20 characters long to be effective. Twelve characters is typically long enough, as long as the words are unique. Lawyerist recommended avoiding real words that can be found in a dictionary. Additionally, attorneys shouldn't use the same password for multiple services, especially if it's something critical such as email and bank accounts. If a hacker can access one website on a computer, he or she can get on every site that uses the same password. It's important to store passwords in a secure location. Never leave them on sticky notes on a monitor. 

Two-factor authentication is another way to better secure sensitive client information. This process utilizes a known password and a code generated from an app and sent via text or email. Because it takes more than a password to access the account, hacking is difficult for cybercriminals to infiltrate. In addition, lawyers can encrypt files to make them harder to decode. 

Because INSZoom's advanced platform enables document sharing in the cloud between lawyers and their clients, it's crucial for all parties to take the proper precautions to keep data secure. Making stronger passwords costs nothing and takes little time, but not taking these steps exposes firms and clients to significant risks of identity theft and lawsuits. INSZoom allows lawyers to build better relationships with clients while keeping data secure. 

date:  Apr 14, 2015 comments:  Comments Off on The importance of strong passwords
by:  INSZoom category:  Data security Read More

Gain visibility into your HR department

posted by: INSZoom date: Apr 14, 2015 Human Resources comments: Comments Off on Gain visibility into your HR department
INSZoom helps managers and executives gauge the performance of their human resources departments.

It's clear INSZoom helps human resource departments of any sized business handle immigration matters smoothly. The workflows and resource base INSZoom provides enable HR professionals to tackle standard business visa issues as well as unique challenges that often arise with mergers and acquisitions.

However, INSZoom does much more than deliver immigration law and application tools. The case management software offers reporting capabilities that allow executives and managers to gain visibility into the productivity and efficiency of the entire HR department.

"INSZoom works with its clients to create and implement custom reports."

Understanding worker value
INSZoom provides standard immigration reporting capabilities so HR professionals can view the statuses of their immigration processes and audit compliance.

In addition to these immigration-specific compliance reports, managers and executives can generate reports regarding employee workloads and actions. Ad hoc reporting allows professionals to define their input and output requirements, seeing only the information they truly need to see.

Professionals can run reports in relation to specific workers, determining the workload and value of each employee – particularly important information when it comes time for annual reviews or requests for raises.

INSZoom provides comprehensive reporting capabilities.INSZoom provides comprehensive reporting capabilities.

Measuring timing and efficiency
By creating specific reports and running them routinely, managers and executives can learn the average time span of specific immigration processes and determine where workflows can be more efficient and the pace quickened.

As timing is so important to immigration matters, managers can determine if specific processes must begin further in advance of particular deadlines to avoid rushing, which increases the risk of errors and being denied a visa.

Realizing success and failure
In addition to looking at the efficiency of immigration processes and determining employee performance, HR professionals can measure their success through INSZoom reporting. Managers can determine the numbers for various outcomes, such as being awarded certain visas or having applications rejected.

Routine reporting can spot troubling trends, such as a growing number of rejected applications, leading managers to make adjustments in the department to improve the situation.

The value of INSZoom as an HR tool can't be understated. Its workflows, forms, integration capabilities and more make it an ideal platform for businesses that consistently handle immigration applications. The reporting capabilities allow HR managers and executives to gain visibility into their departments' performance in relation to specific processes and employees.

Additionally, INSZoom works with its clients to create and implement custom reports, so HR professionals can garner all the information they need to improve their bottom lines.

date:  Apr 14, 2015 comments:  Comments Off on Gain visibility into your HR department
by:  INSZoom category:  Human Resources Read More

Streamline your workflow

posted by: INSZoom date: Apr 14, 2015 Immigration case management comments: Comments Off on Streamline your workflow
Save time for H-1B applications.

Technology greatly improves efficiency in a law firm, especially when it comes to reducing the length of time it takes to complete the steps in a visa application. However, attorneys are often so busy practicing law that they may not have time to stop and evaluate their processes and identify areas for improvement. Although firms need to keep doing the same amount of work – or more –  to remain profitable, technology like INSZoom's case management software can streamline their immigration-related workflows. 

What has changed in the legal landscape?
The legal industry has undergone a number of major shifts in the past few years, which is increasing the need for new technology. Firms face higher price competition, commoditization of legal services, non-hourly billing and a greater number of nontraditional service providers, according to a survey from Altman Weil. Many of these transitions emerged from external pressures, such as more demanding clients and more competitive firms that challenged how legal services are routinely provided. To cope with these changes, law firms need to boost efficiency.

Establishing a more efficient process not only helps immigration law firms reduce the amount of time it takes to file visa applications, but it also helps them become more competitive in their jurisdictions. 

Law firms are under more pressure.Law firms are under more pressure.

How to leverage technology to boost efficiency
Increasing a firm's efficiency is crucial for staying profitable and meeting evolving challenges in the legal industry. Here are some tips to streamline workflows:

  • Go paperless: Having extensive files can make it more difficult to stay organized. With a scanner and a strong file-naming system, firms can improve organization and reduce errors, which saves time and money. Keeping all case files in the cloud allows different employees to access and use them. With INSZoom, clients can upload case documents to the interface.
  • Create streamlined intake forms: While all cases are different, attorneys can save time when processing new cases if they have a single intake form because they are familiar with the document. Additionally, clients can use INSZoom's online portal to fill out and submit these forms.
  • Invest in a new project management process: With a more established internal process, law firms can save time and process H-1B applications in less time. To improve these processes, INSZoom provides established workflows. 

Partner with INSZoom to streamline projects
INSZoom has extensive experience in the immigration law industry and can help firms cut down on the amount of time it takes to perform each step of the H-1B application. Firms may even be able to cut the length of time in half. With letter and email templates and a forms library, lawyers can save time for every part on the application. 

This year's H-1B season may have just ended, but now is the time to invest in INSZoom to get ready for the next round of applications.

date:  Apr 14, 2015 comments:  Comments Off on Streamline your workflow
by:  INSZoom category:  Immigration case management Read More

New grant opportunity from USCIS [Video]

posted by: INSZoom date: Apr 14, 2015 Compliance comments: Comments Off on New grant opportunity from USCIS [Video]
New grant opportunity from USCIS

U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services is accepting applications for the Citizenship and Integration Grant Program, which allows organizations that prepare permanent residents for naturalization and promote increased knowledge of English, U.S. history and civics. The program offers up to $10 million in grants for citizenship preparation around the country. Applications are due May 15.

Many organizations need these types of grants to keep everything running smoothly, but applying for them is complicated. Fortunately, INSZoom can help. Immigration case management software helps businesses keep all the data they need for grant applications and reporting in one place. 

Securing grants helps organizations provide services to their clients. 

date:  Apr 14, 2015 comments:  Comments Off on New grant opportunity from USCIS [Video]
by:  INSZoom category:  Compliance Read More

Reduce employee turnover with better case management software

posted by: INSZoom date: Apr 10, 2015 Money and time saving tips comments: Comments Off on Reduce employee turnover with better case management software
How can companies retain their best employees?

Employers can reduce the risk of losing their best staff by utilizing immigration case management software. Reducing employee turnover is a top priority for many organizations, especially as the costs of recruiting new employees and lost productivity increase. In the post-recession economy, many employers have a harder time retaining skilled workers as highly qualified employees can seek other employment if they aren't satisfied. Several factors, including relationships with managers, benefits, team size, vacation time and salary, influence turnover. 

The costs of employee turnover
Companies know it's a hassle to replace a top performer, especially when the individual also had crucial specialty skills. While this can be a drain on productivity for remaining staff, turnover has potentially unseen costs. Research from the Center for American Progress found employers spend approximately one-fifth of an employee's salary to hire a replacement. These costs are even higher when the position requires advanced knowledge or skills. It also takes time to onboard new employees and return to the same level of productivity.

"Employers spend approximately one-fifth of an employee's salary to hire a replacement."

It's important to consider these costs, as 20 percent of employees will voluntarily seek new positions each year, according to the Center for American Progress. As the economy improves, workers gain more job mobility. 

The role of technology
The internal systems employees use to accomplish their daily tasks are an overlooked aspect of employee turnover. Organizations may select the platforms that make the most sense based on cost and later find these solutions don't  meet their needs. For example, if employees travel for work, they may need to access certain platforms from their laptops. If the platform isn't cloud-based and doesn't have this functionality, it can be a major source of frustration because it interrupts workers' ability to get tasks done. 

Employees are less likely to leave if they have tools that make their work lives easier. In particular, case management software offers multiple improvements that will help organizations run more efficiently. With a case management platform, businesses can codify specific processes to ensure everyone is using the same workflow.  

Companies need helpful software that has a streamlined workflow. Without an established protocol for how tasks should be done, employees may create their own ways of doing things, which results in inefficiencies and makes it more difficult to train new employees. Working without a process can also lead to errors. With a streamlined process, organizations can onboard new staff members more quickly.

More importantly, business protocols allow companies to better manage turnover. If employees leave unexpectedly or take a significant amount of time off, everyone else can manage the same amount of work by following the same process. The right platform can also make it easier for companies to do more work with the same number of people.

INSZoom boosts efficiency to save time and money
Streamlined technology makes daily responsibilities easier for employees, which reduces turnover and daily stress and improves efficiency. Through cloud-based technology and encrypted data, INSZoom's sophisticated platform enables companies to manage these top priorities. INSZoom's case management software offers predefined and customizable templates to help companies guarantee predictability and compliance with immigration laws.

Turnover has substantial costs. With better technology in place, companies can improve internal processes to increase efficiency and minimize the risks of employees feeling the need to leave. 

date:  Apr 10, 2015 comments:  Comments Off on Reduce employee turnover with better case management software
by:  INSZoom category:  Money and time saving tips Read More
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