A recent federal district court case serves as a reminder that when filing documents through an electronic filing system, the information contained in the documents is immediately available to anyone “through perfectly legitimate means: by reading a public filing.” The January 6, 2009 opinion in E-Smart Technologies, Inc., et al. v. Wayne Drizin, et al., 2009 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 272 (N.D. Ca Jan. 6, 2009), demonstrates that when caution is not taken at the onset to seal documents that contain privileged or confidential information, there might be little recourse for immediate distribution of information that one might later determine should have been kept private.
Hoy, Bridget and Malkus, Dana, Sealed Documents to Prevent “Perfectly Legitimate” Review and Dissemination of Privileged Confidential Information. St. Louis Lawyer (March2009).