Niki Armstrong, the chief legal and compliance officer at Pure Storage, says generative AI has the potential to help legal teams “fundamentally change the way they think and operate.”
As a result, her legal department is testing out use cases, including in the area of regulatory compliance support.
The publicly traded data storage technology company is seeing if generative AI can help it monitor changes to the many different laws and regulations that govern its activities.
For example, Armstrong said, her compliance team has started testing whether the latest artificial intelligence can provide useful information about updates to privacy and employment laws in different countries.
The team is also examining whether generative AI can assist with tracking pertinent new regulations for tech companies issued by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
This type of information helps Armstrong’s compliance unit determine whether it needs to update internal policies or create new training materials for employees.
“We are using generative AI to help us better understand how regulatory changes impact us so that we can both form and develop content that is useful and applicable to us, while maintaining ethically sound and legally compliant practices — a strategic priority for our team,” Armstrong told Legal Dive.
Additionally, she is hopeful generative AI can assist Pure Storage’s legal team with automating repetitive tasks and addressing potential compliance issues.
Armstrong said Pure Storage could take the information produced by generative AI about legal and regulatory changes and share it with outside counsel to review for accuracy.
This approach could produce cost savings for the legal department because it is not asking its outside law firms to start their research from scratch.
“We're almost cutting out a little bit of the middleman where we're doing some more initial research on our own and then going to outside counsel to say, 'This is what we have found. Can you review and confirm?’” Armstrong said.
Some law firms have already begun using generative AI, reports indicate, and Armstrong said Pure Storage’s firms may be among them.
A member of Pure Storage’s legal ops team is helping lead an effort to determine whether and how the company’s outside law firms are using the latest AI.
Armstrong said she expects law firms to closely review any work product produced by AI to ensure there are no mishaps like the ChatGPT fake cases scandal out of New York. The two lawyers involved were fined by a federal judge after one of them used OpenAI’s chatbot for legal research without independently verifying its work.
“Certainly, we've seen some of the debacles that have happened with attorneys who have relied on ChatGPT,” Armstrong said. “I can't have inaccurate, unreliable or flat-out false information coming from our trusted partners in these law firms.”
Meanwhile, Pure Storage’s legal team also hopes to use generative AI in the knowledge management context.
Armstrong said that once information about legal and regulatory changes produced by an AI tool is verified either externally or internally, Pure Storage aims to develop knowledge base articles it can reference moving forward.
For example, an internal knowledge base article could provide information about key employment law changes in countries in which Pure Storage has many employees.
“If generative AI could actually help us draft those knowledge management articles, I think that could be huge,” Armstrong said.
Pure Storage’s in-house legal department is also considering potential document automation use cases for generative AI.
But Armstrong said that before moving ahead in that manner, she wants to make sure the deployment of AI will speed up work rather than create more of it.
If the latest AI proves effective with document automation, Armstrong said, this could free up her legal team to spend more time on higher-level strategic work.