Maintaining Deposition Transcript Security

Protect Your Deposition Transcripts

In an age in which data theft is constantly in the news, deposition transcript security should be on the mind of every freelance court reporter.  From scheduling to delivery, there are opportunities for the transcript or the exhibits to be compromised.  Addressing this issue, the NCRA’s Code of Professional Ethics, Provision 4, states that a member court reporter shall “…preserve the confidentiality and ensure the security of information, oral or written, entrusted to the Member by any of the parties in a proceeding.”  In keeping with the organization’s provision, CompuScripts would like to suggest ways of maintaining deposition transcript security .

E-Mail Security

E-mail is such a part of modern life that we take it for granted… until there is a hack.  For freelance court reporters, the ability to securely send e-mail correspondence to a court reporting agency, a scopist, or a proofreader is paramount.  The University of Texas at Austin Center for Identity offers these tips:

  • Make sure that every device — desktop computer, laptop computer, cell phone, or tablet — is password protected. Formulate device passwords and e-mail passwords that are a mix of letters, numbers, and symbols that do not spell a recognizable word or phrase
  • Choose a strong security question with an answer that would be difficult to guess, or use a false answer.
  • Use a Secure Socket Layers, or SSL-enabled email client
  • Encrypt your email messages as well as your email server.

And PC Magazine recommends that you should have a VPN, or virtual private network, on all of your devices.  A VPN makes the use of a public Internet network more secure and more private.

File Transfer Security

Deposition transcript security is extremely important when a court reporter is sending a file electronically.  Many court reporting agencies, such as CompuScripts, use specific portals through which files are delivered and retrieved.  The reporter and recipient may also  insure deposition transcript security by using a secure file sharing service.  In its blog entitled “10 Secure File Sharing Options, Tips, and Solutions,” the data security company Varonis lists its favorite file sharing services, such as Box, SecureDocs, and Egnyte.  Regardless of which service is in use, court reporters should investigate and use all the security settings made available.

Exhibit Security

Following a deposition, the court reporter becomes the guardian of the exhibits that were introduced.  Therefore, the court reporter is responsible for the exhibits while they are being transported from the deposition site and then stored at the reporter’s home or office.  To maintain deposition transcript security, the exhibits should be properly transported and stored.  Online merchants such as Amazon offer fireproof document bags for use in transport and fireproof safes for storage at a reporter’s home or office.

Archive Security

Even after the final transcript has been delivered, a court reporter still must preserve notes, backup audio media, and the final transcript file.  When considering deposition transcript security, it is important to choose the right way to archive those records.   One way is to use a cloud-storage service that offers bank-level encryption, such as Sharefile or Box.

CompuScripts understands the responsibilities of court reporters.  For more than 30 years, CompuScripts has adhered to the ethical standards of the National Association of Court Reporters.  If you are a court reporter who is looking for an agency that upholds the best practices of the industry, contact CompuScripts Court Reporting.