The fourth installment in our ‘reasons to archive’ explores Discovery, otherwise known as eDiscovery or edisclosure, and we’ll explain how archiving solutions can help organizations prepare for litigation…
Preparing for Discovery
An increasing number of businesses are having to perform discovery and document review exercises on a regular basis. This may be in response to external litigation, a freedom of information request, or an internal workplace dispute. Organizations facing any of these scenarios need to locate responsive data, collect and preserve it, review it to ensure no information produced contains privileged information, eliminate any data which isn’t relevant to the case at hand, and finally produce this information to their own inside counsel or to an outside party.
What are the challenges with Discovery?
Email comprises the majority of data to be searched and reviewed. Typically 90% of electronically searchable information within an organization is contained within email, so the volumes involved can be considerable.
|The volume of email retained by most organizations is substantial. As all of it may need to be searched, an exercise on this scale can be challenging to organize and manage successfully.|
|A typical discovery exercise might identify hundreds of thousands of emails, so the cost of a review exercise can be substantial, particularly if this involves bringing in third-party resources.|
|As well as searching data held centrally in Exchange mailboxes or in archives, it may be necessary to search individual PST files located on network servers and end user devices.|
|Email must be preserved as soon as an organization considers litigation to be imminent, and FOIA (Freedom of Information) requests must be responded to within very short timescales.|
|The criteria for initial discovery has to be broadly based on keywords and metadata, so it is necessary to review and narrow down the initial set of data before it is produced.|
|When undertaking a legal discovery, it is vital that the initial set of email data identified and put on legal hold must be protected from deletion or amendment for as long as necessary.|
How can archiving solutions help?
At the simplest level, most archiving solutions provide a basic search and retrieval capability for data that has already been captured and retained within their archive. More advanced Information Management solutions address the wider needs of discovery exercises, allowing organizations to: .
|Data can be located and searched over a wide range of locations wherever it exists across the organization, including Exchange mailboxes, archives and PST. Using a single central solution to coordinate and manage discovery for all data regardless of location means that organizations can complete the process effectively and consistently..|
|Capturing and preserving email in a separate secure archive outside the operational environment ensures it cannot be amended or tampered with, and can be kept securely for as long as needed. For legal discovery this also enables organizations to demonstrate they have complied with their legal duty in this respect..|
|Organizations are able to respond immediately to any discovery requests they receive. Public entities can meet Freedom of Information requests within the short timeframes required, and data can preserved for legal discovery as soon as the need is identified|
|Email discovery, collection and early case assessment exercises can be performed in-house, only bringing in expensive litigation experts if needed for the later stages of legal discovery. With all data collected into a single central archive, organizations are able to reduce the number of documents produced for subsequent external review and which must be redacted for privileged information.|
Discovery with C2C
C2C’s discovery solution enables organizations to respond to requests in a timely and cost effect manner, avoiding costly fines and sanctions. Bringing identification, collection and preservation together in a single solution, our solutions enable organizations to perform discovery and early case assessment exercises effectively using in house resources.
Our solution searches and captures email from across the organization, and preserves it in a separate secure archive where it can be placed on legal hold if needed. Data in this archive can then be reviewed and categorized by end users using an intuitive web-based console, with relevant email exported as required for subsequent formal review.
In our next blog we will be looking at why PST files are often considered the ‘fly-in-the-ointment’ by IT departments. We will discuss the risks they present to organisations, and the benefits of locating, managing or migrating and eliminating them …