Intranet, like extranet, can be defined as a private or restricted computer network in which companies, or law firms that paralegals must concern themselves with, may share information. The distinction that exists between these two terms, however, is that of the extranet being an extent of the intranet, but as furthered via the internet to others who may not be directly connected to the law firm. It has been employed by firms and other companies with the express purpose of managing dealings between each other in an efficient manner.
Some other advantages that can be garnered by the use of an intranet and extranet include the following: adequate transferring of multitudes of data, increased collaboration efforts, as well as the sharing of other important applications. Such data would be akin to that which may have been obtained from sites such as West Law and Lexis-Nexis. Each of these provides numerous amounts information daily with West Law focusing mainly on law and Lexis-Nexis broadening its scope to business as well as other areas of interest.
The systems of intranet and extranet have contributed to provide support for the often intricate practice of law, since it is inherently based on years and years of precedence in the form of documents and statutes. These systems allow law firms the ability to communicate in a more adequate and simplified fashion with their clients, especially those of the corporate type. The advent of such systems, in addition to other areas of legal research such as West Law and Lexis-Nexis, succeed in the increased productivity of such transactions. Law firms are, then, able to conduct increased amounts of legal proceedings in less time as prior to the use of such systems.
With people’s time being increasingly spent on computers, clients are almost expecting the use of the systems of intranet and extranet. Examples of the types of pertinent information that may be stored and available for exchange on a law firm intranet include: “internal policies and procedure manuals,” “company directories,” “office locations,” as well as “press releases.” Following the need to extend such materials to others such as clients, then, extranet may be employed so as to convey them via the internet in no time at all. Though this does occur over the internet, a level of privacy is still maintained, which allows for such a practice.
In order to ensure privacy, it would be important to maintain and institute passwords. This allows for the adequate authorization of appropriate individuals involved. Such systems as intranet and extranet have only added to the adequacy and proficiency by which law firms may operate. Due to this, paralegals must be well-versed in such endeavors in addition to their use of sites such as West Law and Lexis-Nexis.