Case Study: Royds Withy King

Dynamic legal practice Royds Withy King adopts Egress sending a positive message to their clients and a statement of intent to their competitors.

Case Study

Royds Withy King LogoEstablished in the South West over 100 years ago, Royds Withy King has expanded from its traditional West Country roots and is now regarded as a dynamic and highly ambitious 21st century legal practice.

Employing 300 members of staff with offices in Abingdon, Bath, London, Marlborough, Oxford, Swindon, and Thame, Royds Withy King provide their clients with specialist business advice and legal services using the latest innovation in technology.

“You don’t wait for a breach and a 200K fine. By then the horse has bolted and it’s already too late.”

Dave Eagle, Head of IT, Royds Withy King

The challenge

Sharing confidential information electronically presents a significant risk to both firm and client. One momentary lapse in concentration or a simple breakdown in communication can result in sensitive information being lost, mishandled, or distributed to unauthorised recipients.

This challenge is faced by legal firms all over the world. While many believe the risk to their integrity and business reputation is too great and act, others do not and are in danger of being left behind in the wake of progressive firms looking to embrace the ‘information age’ and improve service delivery.

The selection process

Open to change and keen to maintain a business culture that promotes innovation, Royds Withy King take pride in their use of technology and are always looking for better ways to deliver client services.

Dave Eagle, Head of IT comments, “As a progressive firm that is growing very rapidly, the services we offer and the manner in which we deliver them is extremely important to us. As such, we constantly re-evaluate our existing processes in the hope to make the firm more efficient and enable us to pass any cost savings on to our clients.”

Keen to stay ahead of their competition, Royds Withy King turned their attention to improving how the firm exchanged information sent by email, as this was the most popular mechanism used to share confidential data. Having quickly discounted using password protected files or TLS encryption, Royds Withy King soon realised that a more sophisticated approach was necessary in order to satisfy regulatory requirements and changing business needs.

Eagle comments, “Anyone with access to Google and two minutes on their hands can break password protected files. Besides; this basic level of protection doesn’t offer any assurance around who is accessing the data. As for standard TLS encryption, we haven’t always got the time to pre-establish relationships between IT departments before our lawyers can share information.”

Determined to offer users the ability to send confidential data electronically on an ‘ad-hoc’ basis, Royds Withy King decided to take matters into their own hands and establish firm wide standards when sharing sensitive client data.

“I was up and running in minutes. The Egress client installed a nice and simple drop-down menu into my Outlook client. All I needed to do was select the option to encrypt and away it went.”

Dave Eagle, Head of IT, Royds Withy King

The solution

During the evaluation process, which included several leading brands, Dave was asked to consider Egress following a positive experience when using the product with a local accountancy practice. Having installed the client software, Dave knew instantly why so many Legal and Accountancy firms chose Egress to protect confidential client data.

Eagle comments, “I was up and running in minutes. The Egress client installed a nice and simple drop-down menu into my Outlook client. All I needed to do was select the option to encrypt and away it went.”

Leveraging patented key management and a choice of on-premise or hosted infrastructure, Egress goes beyond the capabilities of legacy protection offering customers ‘follow the data’ control wherever the information resides.

Eagle comments, “As soon as we decided to introduce authenticated access to confidential data, we had to find a product that enabled third parties to manage their own identity. What came as a nice surprise to us, not only did Egress fit the bill technically, they also offer a collaborative licensing model that allows our clients to reply securely completely free of charge.”

This refreshing approach to data security enabled Royds Withy King to offer additional client services designed to prevent costly fines while at the same time add tangible business value. As a result, Royds Withy King’s requirements soon expanded beyond simple email encryption to include CD/DVD encryption and the ability to transfer large files securely.

Eagle comments, “You don’t wait for a breach and a 200K fine. By then the horse has bolted and it’s already too late. It goes back to us being proactive with our use of technology to ensure we can deliver legal advice even in the most unusual circumstances. That’s why we also use the integrated secure large file transfer component. This way, when deals run late into the night and email gateway limitations prevent files from being delivered, we can avoid using expensive couriers and guarantee that our information always arrives on time.”

“As soon as we decided to introduce authenticated access to confidential data, we had to find a product that enabled third parties to manage their own identity. What came as a nice surprise to us, not only did Egress fit the bill technically, they also offer a collaborative licensing model that allows our clients to reply securely completely free of charge.”

Dave Eagle, Head of IT, Royds Withy King

The results

By embracing technology and improving service delivery Royds Withy King are well placed to satisfy increasing demand to share information electronically, while at the same time mitigate potential risk by protecting client data. Eagle comments, “When we first went live we did get feedback which I have to say was extremely positive overall. Clients were pleased to see that we were behaving responsibly with their information and now, several months on, Egress is used religiously across the firm when we need to share personal or sensitive data.”

Designed to cater for sole practitioners, small businesses, and Enterprise firms, Egress revolutionises the way in which legal firms exchange confidential data by integrating seamlessly with email applications and practice management systems.

Eagle comments, “As an ambitious practice we look to differentiate ourselves by the services we offer and the technology partners we choose to work with. This forward thinking approach not only guarantees that our clients current and future needs remain at the heart of our focus, but it also promotes a pro-active working environment that helps us to attract the highest calibre of professional staff to the firm.”

Tony Pepper, CEO for Egress Software Technologies comments, “We are pleased to have been selected by Royds Withy King to provide their users with a simple mechanism to send encrypted email, burn encrypted CDs, or share large files. This exciting new partnership enables Royds Withy King to preserve its outstanding reputation, comply with regulatory requirements, and solve operational challenges surrounding the transfer of personal or sensitive information.”

Eagle concludes, “The advice and information we provide remains Royds Withy King’s most valuable business asset. As such, we are compelled to use appropriate methods to ensure the protection of this data when transferred physically or electronically. Having fully implemented Egress, we now encourage all of our clients to communicate securely, protecting our practice from the SRA and our clients from the ICO.”

About Egress

Egress takes a people-centric approach to data security – helping users receive, manage and share sensitive data securely to meet compliance requirements and drive business productivity. Using machine learning, Egress ensures information is protected relative to the risk of a data breach and reduces user friction to ensure smooth adoption.

Trusted by enterprise organisations and governments around the globe, Egress’ award-winning platform provides email encryption, secure file transfer and online collaboration services, as well as risk management, accidental send prevention, and compliance auditing and reporting.

Egress is headquartered in London, with regional offices in the UK, the US, Canada and the Netherlands.