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Information Governance: Three Things You Should Know About e-Discovery


If the word ‘e-discovery’ puts terror in your heart, you’re not alone. Discovery is a formidable task which has only become complicated with advancing technology. No longer is it just a matter of sorting through a handful of filing cabinets. Now, even routine litigation regularly requires scouring everything from computers to phones and third-party servers for relevant information. In the case of class-actions, e-discovery often requires even greater expense and effort.

However, e-discovery does not have to be overwhelming, provided you keep these three basic points in mind:

  1. A company must preserve potentially relevant information – When involved in litigation, organizations have a duty to preserve any information in their possession which might be relevant to a claim. In fact, this duty may arise prior to the filing of a suit and continues until conclusion of the action.
    The duty to preserve evidence can encompass everything from text messages to digital time punches and may extend beyond company equipment to personal devices. Often, the sheer volume of the potentially relevant information makes e-discovery in class actions expensive and time consuming.
  2. Establish proactive policies for the digital workplace – Every company needs a comprehensive digital governance plan to address the issues inherent in the digital workplace. Organizations that allow or require employees to use their personal devices for work require clear mandates setting forth expectations and responsibilities.
  3. Make it a team effort – Implementing proactive policies and responding to active litigation requires the combined professional expertise of legal, technical and leadership teams. Leadership needs to understand the software issues underlying the preservation of electronic data to implement the most effective policies. IT needs to understand the importance of the duty to preserve to effectively assess and limit the scope of the data that falls into e-discovery.

Reduce your risk of facing punitive sanctions and / or fines. Initiate a process to evaluate how your Information Governance policies address your (potential) e-discovery needs today.

Tomorrow’s technology is shaping business today. To learn more about how MNP can help you improve your information governance and e-discovery initiatives, contact John Desborough, Director Consulting and Technology Solutions at [email protected].