eDisclosure (sometimes known as eDiscovery) is a complex process. With automated tools available some opt to manage these in-house but, unless highly skilled and experienced personnel are involved in the process, there is no guarantee that these tools will be used to their maximum effect or that mistakes will not be made. Given that the ultimate goal is court acceptance, many firms opt to work in partnership with an expert eDisclosure Managed Service provider.
SRM’s forensic team, established in 2002, is drawn from law enforcement, government agencies and military with over 60 years’ combined experience. The team has delivered thousands of cases supporting law firms, government agencies and commercial organisations in the accurate production of case papers and reports to be tendered in court. The following case studies show, in brief, the added value we bring to real-life eDisclosure cases.
FTSE 250 Company vs Local Authority
This case, involving a FTSE 250 company and a local authority related to the forensic collection of over 150GB of data. This data included the email accounts of 15 custodians and their shared work space folders on the server.
- The forensic collection was carried out by trained, experienced forensic investigators which ensured the data was collected in its original state and the integrity of the data maintained.
- Once collected, the data was processed using the Relativity eDiscovery platform which allows the analysis and review of the data by secure access.
- When processed on the platform the data is automatically searched for duplicate documents and these are highlighted and removed from the data set. In this case we were left with over 460,000 documents for review.
- Further reduction of the data set was achieved firstly by email threading which removes emails which are part of a thread and only highlights emails which are unique. Secondly agreed keyword searches were run across the data and only documents which contained a keyword hit remained in the data set.
- The final number of documents for review was just under 260,000, nearly a 50% reduction which saved the reviewing lawyers considerable time when it came to the review of the documents.
Two large companies in the service industries
A litigation between 2 large companies in the service industries involved the collection of data which was in excess of 1.2TB. What made this eDiscovery task more complex was the format of the data. The usual email server was captured as well as 8 laptop computers and 2 mobile phones.
- The total volume of data captured could have been processed directly onto the Relativity platform at great expense to the client due to the volume. To reduce the volume SRM used forensic software to identify irrelevant documents such as system files and other known files commonly found on digital devices. Files such as documents, spread sheets, pdfs and emails were identified and extracted.
- The ability of SRM to use forensic tools to reduce the data volume prior to processing onto the platform is a method which saves the client money and time when it comes to processing and reviewing the data.
- The reduction in the data went from 2 TB to 160 GB which was then uploaded to the Relativity platform. This was then de duplicated, threaded and keyword searches were run across the data to further reduce the volume.
Secretary of State vs PLC
A litigation between a Secretary of State and a large PLC involved the forensic collection of over 30 GB of data. This data included email accounts and shared work space folders on the server. Prior to the forensic collection of the data, forensic investigators at SRM were named in the court order as being the only persons who could handle the data. This was based on the experience, background and vetting of the individuals.
- Once collected, the data was processed using the Relativity eDiscovery platform which allows the analysis and review of the data by secure access. When processed on the platform the data is automatically searched for duplicate documents and these are highlighted and removed from the data set.
- Further reduction of the data set was achieved firstly by email threading, which removes emails which are part of a thread and only highlights emails which are unique. Secondly, agreed keyword searches were run across the data and only documents which contained a keyword hit remained in the data set.
- The method of usage of the Relativity platform in this case proved innovative because it was used by both parties in the litigation as well as an independent party appointed by the court. This involved setting up of 3 separate review platforms each one restrictive to the other parties.
- In addition to being used for review, the separate platforms were used as a repository for shared documents along with comments which were placed on the documents by other parties.
- The forensic investigators under instruction was also responsible for the redaction of documents which contained privileged or irrelevant material.
- By using the named individuals in SRM considerable time and expense was saved by the client when it came to the review. In total the 6 million documents were reduced to 17,000 for review.
The head of SRM’s eDisclosure team Colin Gray hosted a live (free) webinar on the benefits of a Managed eDiscovery service on Wedneday 18th April at 3pm. A recorded version is now available. To view, click here.
To find out more about SRM’s Managed eDisclosure service, contact Mark Nordstrom on firstname.lastname@example.org or 03450 21 21 51.
To find out about the specific benefits, visit our website.
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