What is eDiscovery?
eDiscovery is the process of preparing digital information for civil litigation or as part of a criminal investigation. It is effectively the digital equivalent of the moment in every legal TV show where they wheel in piles of boxes of documents for the paralegals to review. During litigation, discovery is when information that will be used as evidence is surfaced between the parties involved. For electronically stored information (ESI), eDiscovery software helps legal teams to collect, preserve and prepare data for legal use. Prior to discovery, pertinent files may be placed in a legal hold to prevent them being deleted.
When do I need eDiscovery?
eDiscovery is a necessary component in the process of civil litigation and criminal proceedings. It may impact both companies and individuals. You may be required to prepare and preserve digital documentation by a legal or law enforcement body. In order to fulfill this responsibility, it is useful to purchase legal hold data retention solutions which integrate well with the eDiscovery process, such as backup software that preserves your files and that has robust search capabilities to process, analyze and review your data.
Who has responsibility for eDiscovery?
Companies that are subject to litigation will need legal counsel to guide the process as well as an eDiscovery professional who actually undergoes the process of collection and presentation of data. eDiscovery professionals are typically members of the company with experience in filing claims or handling data in a corporate or legal environment. Attorneys do not necessarily handle the eDiscovery process itself as they might be busy with other aspects and may lack the technical expertise required.
Best Practices for eDiscovery
Owning the right software and having processes in place for managing and organizing data in place will greatly assist the eDiscovery and legal hold process. Purchase software that has eDiscovery features like legal hold settings to prevent tampering or deletion of data. Consider a cloud backup provider with versioning and deduplication available in order to protect business documents against tampering and deletion by holding multiple copies allowing for easy restoration of earlier versions. Additionally, you may want to invest in software that has robust integration capabilities with other synergistic applications using an open API or off-the-shelf integrations.
Requirements of eDiscovery Legal Hold Software Solutions
It’s essential your company remains in compliance when dealing with legal action. Your data backup solutions can play a key role in ensuring full compliance, protecting your business from spoliation sanctions, fines, and other adverse inference. Even before you expect legal action, make sure your data backup software solution provides:
- Continuous Protection
- Chain-of-Custody Validation
- Custodian Invisible Backup
- Version Retention
- File Metadata Preservation
- Easy eDiscovery Integration
If you’re interested in learning more about CrashPlan’s endpoint backup solutions, request a free trial today.