SHARE



ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Gary Audin
Gary Audin is the President of Delphi, Inc. He has more than 40 years of computer, communications and security...
Read Full Bio >>
SHARE



Gary Audin | June 28, 2012 |

 
   

The Cloud and E-discovery: A Complex Challenge

The Cloud and E-discovery: A Complex Challenge Is IT actually ready for cloud E-discovery, or is it just assuming it is ready?

Is IT actually ready for cloud E-discovery, or is it just assuming it is ready?

If you are responsible for data retention (electronically stored information or ESI) and you are using the cloud for even something as mundane as voice mail, e-mail and IM, get ahead of the lawyers for E-discovery. You never know when some legal action will be taken against your organization. This country loves lawsuits. Is your IT department ready to satisfy the E-discovery requirements? What if the data is in the cloud? When an organization subscribes to UC or contact center services in the cloud, the ESI is in the cloud. When employees use social media like Facebook or LinkedIn for work, the ESI problem worsens.

Assuming that the data is easily accessible and in original unmodified form is just that, an assumption. This assumption by the organization’s lawyers is reasonable, but is IT actually ready for cloud E-discovery, or is it just assuming it is ready? The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure require an organization to be able to produce ESI that has been preserved by the organization and can be demonstrate to have in their possession, custody and control. When the cloud is involved, then this is a joint--organization and cloud provider--responsibility. This is a murky area. There are few court cases to base decisions upon for an organization’s lawyers to review.

A cloud problem is that the organization does not know where the data is stored. Further, the organization may be unaware of the data format stored and the data format required. Another wrinkle is how fast can the cloud provider deliver the data?

There are three approaches for E-discovery in the cloud. Christine Taylor of the Taneja Group posted a blog on this subject, "9 Top Trends in eDiscovery #4: eDiscovery in the Cloud". She defines the approaches and the risks associated with cloud E-discovery:

1. Using the cloud for E-discovery application delivery (SaaS), is low risk since data itself stays behind the organization’s firewall. The SaaS packages cover processes like data collection, data preservation, and review.

2. Archiving data sent to the cloud and contracting with the cloud provider to run E-discovery processes is also low risk. This puts the responsibility on the organization to select a secure service with an excellent track record.

3. Organizations that store active data in the cloud and are subject to security, privacy and other regulatory actions are the highest risk of the three. This is where the service level agreements are inadequate and usually do not have mechanisms available to report on physical data locations to their customers. This can be a serious defensibility issue for the organization. This is the likely scenario for those organizations that subscribe to UC or contact center services in the cloud.

Clearwell Systems, now part of Symantec, published a survey in June 2011, "Clearwell Systems Survey Finds Cloud and Social Media Applications will be Twice as Relevant in E-Discovery by End of 2011". The survey results show dramatic changes from the 2010 survey.

* Sixty percent of respondents expected E-discovery of cloud-based applications in 2011, twice the number in 2010.
* When social media applications were covered in the survey, 58 percent of respondents expected to manage them as part of e-discovery in 2011, twice the 27 percent who did so in 2010.
* The number of lawsuits and regulatory inquiries increased 70 percent from 2009 to 2010.
* Seven out of 10 companies believed that E-discovery investigations would continue to increase.
* In response to these issues, 93 percent of the surveyed organizations intended to bring some portion of ESI for E-discovery in-house over the next year.

Some good advice to follow is:

1. E-mail may be well covered by the cloud contracts. Other media may not, including voice mail, IM, video web conferencing.
2. Know where your ESI is stored at all times.
3. Cloud subscriptions are easy to implement. Watch out for business units that go their own way outside of IT.
4. Plan for E-discovery. Don't just respond to an E-discovery request when it arises.





COMMENTS



August 16, 2017

Contact centers have long been at the leading edge of innovation in communications technology, given their promise of measurable ROI and the continual need to optimize customer interactions and sta

July 12, 2017

Enterprises have been migrating Unified Communications & Collaboration applications to datacenters - private clouds - for the past few years. With this move comes the opportunity to leverage da

May 31, 2017

In the days of old, people in suits used to meet at a boardroom table to update each other on their work. Including a remote colleague meant setting a conference phone on the table for in-person pa

August 16, 2017
World Vision U.S. is finding lots of goodness in RingCentral's cloud communications service, but as Randy Boyd, infrastructure architect at the global humanitarian nonprofit, tells us, he and his team....
August 11, 2017
Alicia Gee, director of unified communications at Sutter Physician Services, oversees the technical team supporting a 1,000-agent contact center running on Genesys PureConnect. She catches us up on th....
August 4, 2017
Andrew Prokop, communications evangelist with Arrow Systems Integration, has lately been working on integrating enterprise communications into Internet of Things ecosystems. He shares examples and off....
July 27, 2017
Industry watcher Elka Popova, a Frost & Sullivan program director, shares her perspective on this acquisition, discussing Mitel's market positioning, why the move makes sense, and more.
July 14, 2017
Lantre Barr, founder and CEO of Blacc Spot Media, urges any enterprise that's been on the fence about integrating real-time communications into business workflows to jump off and get started. Tune and....
June 28, 2017
Communications expert Tsahi Levent-Levi, author of the popular BlogGeek.me blog, keeps a running tally and comprehensive overview of communications platform-as-a-service offerings in his "Choosing a W....
June 9, 2017
If you think telecom expense management applies to nothing more than business phone lines, think again. Hyoun Park, founder and principal investigator with technology advisory Amalgam Insights, tells ....
June 2, 2017
Enterprises strategizing on mobility today, including for internal collaboration, don't have the luxury of learning as they go. Tony Rizzo, enterprise mobility specialist with Blue Hill Research, expl....
May 24, 2017
Mark Winther, head of IDC's global telecom consulting practice, gives us his take on how CPaaS providers evolve beyond the basic building blocks and address maturing enterprise needs.
May 18, 2017
Diane Myers, senior research director at IHS Markit, walks us through her 2017 UC-as-a-service report... and shares what might be to come in 2018.
April 28, 2017
Change isn't easy, but it is necessary. Tune in for advice and perspective from Zeus Kerravala, co-author of a "Digital Transformation for Dummies" special edition.
April 20, 2017
Robin Gareiss, president of Nemertes Research, shares insight gleaned from the firm's 12th annual UCC Total Cost of Operations study.
March 23, 2017
Tim Banting, of Current Analysis, gives us a peek into what the next three years will bring in advance of his Enterprise Connect session exploring the question: Will there be a new model for enterpris....
March 15, 2017
Andrew Prokop, communications evangelist with Arrow Systems Integration, discusses the evolving role of the all-important session border controller.
March 9, 2017
Organizer Alan Quayle gives us the lowdown on programmable communications and all you need to know about participating in this pre-Enterprise Connect hackathon.
March 3, 2017
From protecting against new vulnerabilities to keeping security assessments up to date, security consultant Mark Collier shares tips on how best to protect your UC systems.
February 24, 2017
UC analyst Blair Pleasant sorts through the myriad cloud architectural models underlying UCaaS and CCaaS offerings, and explains why knowing the differences matter.
February 17, 2017
From the most basics of basics to the hidden gotchas, UC consultant Melissa Swartz helps demystify the complex world of SIP trunking.
February 7, 2017
UC&C consultant Kevin Kieller, a partner at enableUC, shares pointers for making the right architectural choices for your Skype for Business deployment.
February 1, 2017
Elka Popova, a Frost & Sullivan program director, shares a status report on the UCaaS market today and offers her perspective on what large enterprises need before committing to UC in the cloud.
January 26, 2017
Andrew Davis, co-founder of Wainhouse Research and chair of the Video track at Enterprise Connect 2017, sorts through the myriad cloud video service options and shares how to tell if your choice is en....
January 23, 2017
Sheila McGee-Smith, Contact Center/Customer Experience track chair for Enterprise Connect 2017, tells us what we need to know about the role cloud software is playing in contact centers today.