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The Big Data Question The recent Bloomberg privacy issue is really a journalistic ethics issue about the wall which has always existed between news reporting and the newspaper or news service subscriber data. I believe there is a bigger issue lurking out there for all the large legal research providers. What really scares me is the prospect of a rogue internal or external hacker who could analyse all of the search queries of a law firm and draw some conclusions about things like M&A activity, litigation research or government investigations. Law firm research queries are a treasure trove of leads… pretty innocuous standing alone – but probably an interesting “data map” of law firm client support activity if viewed in the aggregate. In 30 years I have never ever heard of a breach or misuse of this kind of data at LexisNexis Westlaw, Wolters Kluwer or Bloomberg but I think it is time that these companies provide more information to customers about how they protect law firms and their clients from the threats of a “big data” hack.