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Training Snapshot: Law Prediscovery Electronic Discovery Loader

Terry Leang BioTerry Leang is a Senior Solutions Consultant with CloudNine with more than 8+ years of experience in electronic discovery. He has substantial experience with Early Data Analyzer, LAW PreDiscovery and Concordance. At CloudNine, Terry conducts presales demonstrations for new and existing clients, onsite and remote training courses as well as onsite consulting to develop custom workflows. Prior to his career at CloudNine, Terry worked as a litigation support analyst at a large law firm and was a trainer/consultant at LexisNexis.

An introduction to the LAW PreDiscovery Electronic Discovery Loader Utility, which provides many options for processing different types of sources and to tailor your import based on your project specifications. The Electronic Discovery Loader provides the ability to ingest data from multiple sources and apply settings specific to your case settings such as enabling Archive Extraction, Deduplication, Text Extraction and much more.

CloudNine Electronic Discovery Loader Settings Overview

Terry Leang is a Senior Solutions Consultant with CloudNine with more than 8+ years of experience in electronic discovery. He has substantial experience with Early Data Analyzer, LAW PreDiscovery, and Concordance. At CloudNine, Terry conducts presales demonstrations for new and existing clients, onsite and remote training courses as well as onsite consulting to develop custom workflows. Prior to his career at CloudNine, Terry worked as a litigation support analyst at a large law firm and was a trainer/consultant at LexisNexis.

An overview of the configurable settings in the LAW PreDiscovery Electronic Discovery Loader, that are specific to the type of source you’re importing. Based on policies and project specifications, the settings tab is used to determine how specific file types will be handled during the import process, such as extracting the contents of an archive or detecting duplicate files, as well as how the files will be organized in the folder view of LAW PreDiscovery.

CloudNine Training Snapshot: Concordance Desktop Updating Image Bases

Travis Ballenger is a Solution Consultant with 5 years of experience in eDiscovery. He began as a member of the Concordance Support team at LexisNexis in 2013 and quickly became a Field Service Engineer providing dedicated technical support including onboarding of clients and acting as a conduit between his clients and internal teams in order to ensure client satisfaction and client renewals.

Travis is available to support the sales team both in pre- and post-sales efforts with demos, product conversations, training and road map calls for all on-premise products.

The Importance of Early Data Assessment: eDiscovery Best Practices

Why do we have a picture of Santa Claus for an eDiscovery blog post about early data assessment?  Read on.

In the Fall 2016 eDiscovery Business Confidence Survey conducted last month, over a third of all respondents cited Increasing Volumes of Data as expected to be most impactful to the business of eDiscovery over the next six months.  With more and more data to manage, understanding what you have in that data as early as possible has become more important than ever as you attempt to plan the budget for your upcoming discovery efforts.

Knowing how much data you have in gigabytes (GB) or terabytes (TB) that may be subject to litigation isn’t enough to accurately estimate the number of files you have.  As we’ve discussed before, the number of files in each gigabyte can vary widely.

Why is that important?  The more files you have, the more files you potentially have to review.  With review costs estimated to be between 70-80 percent of all eDiscovery costs, a lot more files to review can drive up eDiscovery costs significantly.  Wouldn’t it be better to know early in the case how many files you have?

That’s where early data assessment comes in.  The ability to assess your data early enables you to better estimate your eDiscovery costs, so that you can decide whether to settle or litigate and also so that you can plan resources if you do decide to litigate.

In addition to determining the number of files that you have, it’s also beneficial to determine the expanded size of your collection after processing (so that you can estimate costs for storing or hosting that collection) to determine how many different types of files you have and how many files and data volume is comprised by each file type.  Also, whether any of the files are exception files, such as corrupt or password protected files.  Those files can take a lot of time to address, adding costs to the eDiscovery process.

Want more?  It’s also important to determine how many emails and attachments you have, how many domains those emails represent and also how many email conversations are encompassed with those emails.  And, the timelines for your email collection, so you can identify potential gaps in your collection.

Early data assessment can provide all of that information to you at the outset of litigation.

Here’s the best news: it doesn’t have to cost anything to perform that early data assessment.  CloudNine is offering free early data assessment reporting to provide your organization with valuable information to help shape its litigation strategy.  Consider it an early holiday present this season!  You’re welcome, and happy holidays!

I told you to read on, right?  :o)

So, what do you think?  Do you perform assessment of your data early in the litigation life cycle?  Please share any comments you might have or if you’d like to know more about a particular topic.

Disclaimer: The views represented herein are exclusively the views of the author, and do not necessarily represent the views held by CloudNine. eDiscovery Daily is made available by CloudNine solely for educational purposes to provide general information about general eDiscovery principles and not to provide specific legal advice applicable to any particular circumstance. eDiscovery Daily should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a lawyer you have retained and who has agreed to represent you.

eDiscovery Trends: iDiscovery

 

Yesterday was a day that tech enthusiasts and ordinary people alike had circled on their calendar since it was confirmed as the date of Apple’s press event to unveil the iPhone5. Apple proudly boasted that it had sold 400 million iOS devices by the end of June of this year, which can in part be attributed to the smoothly operating software running on their devices. Advances in mobile high tech have made these portable computers accessible and their presence inescapable even among late adopters. What is simple and intuitive from a user standpoint, however, can prove challenging and fickle to a computer forensics expert.

Richard Lutkus of Law Technology News writes that there are many factors that must be considered when investigating an iOS device, such as “device model, generation, storage capacity, iOS version, iCloud activation status, and passcode protection status. One example of the importance of these identification questions is iCloud, which is Apple's information syncing service. The presence and status of this service may be important because information found on an iOS device could be automatically synced to one or several computers or other iOS devices.”

Lutkus points out that mobile device forensics requires skills that not all computer forensic professionals possess. For example, an important part of the preservation of a mobile device is isolation from all data networks to ensure no changes occur on the device, such as a remote wipe.  A few ways of isolating the hardware include a signal blocking “Faraday” bag, removing the SIM card, or enabling airplane mode. From there, the two methods of imaging an iOS device are logical capture and physical imaging. Lutkus explains, “Logical capture is the preservation of all active (no file fragments or other ephemera) files on a device. This method is similar to an iTunes backup in that it saves the same types of data as iTunes backups. In contrast, physical imaging captures everything that a logical capture does, but includes deleted file fragments, temporary cache files, and other ephemera. Generally, physical imaging is more desirable if it is technically possible. Though slower, this approach is widely accepted, is compatible with most forensic tools, and preserves all data on a device.”

There are other challenges in preserving the data in an iOS device, especially hardware newer than the iPhone 4S and Ipad 3, which include encryption of even unallocated space of memory when a passcode has been used. The quality of data one might expect to find after imaging and decrypting could include: “contacts, call logs, speed dials, voicemail, Bluetooth devices, screenshots, bookmarks, web clips, calendars, messages, email, attachments, internet history, internet cookies, photos, audio recordings, notes, videos, music, app list, keystroke information, GPS coordinates, wi-fi network memberships, user names and passwords, map searches, app-specific data, cell tower information, serial number, device name, device IMEI (international mobile equipment identify number), device serial number, version, and generation, etc.” This type of information can be crucial in the first 7 to 10 days after litigation hits, as we have previously covered here. These devices seem to know so much about us that companies like Apple have had to release statements to state they are not recording and storing your location in response to allegations of privacy invasion. With the number of expected sales of the iPhone5 potentially adding between a quarter and a half percent to America’s GDP, there will be millions more iPhone’s will making their ways into the hands of consumers and eventually, no doubt, into the hands of mobile forensic experts.

So, what do you think? Have mobile computing devices, such as smartphones and tablets, been material to your eDiscovery work? Have other mobile operating systems, such as Blackberry or Android, presented challenges that differ from iOS? Please share any comments you might have or if you’d like to know more about a particular topic.

Disclaimer: The views represented herein are exclusively the views of the author, and do not necessarily represent the views held by CloudNine Discovery. eDiscoveryDaily is made available by CloudNine Discovery solely for educational purposes to provide general information about general eDiscovery principles and not to provide specific legal advice applicable to any particular circumstance. eDiscoveryDaily should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a lawyer you have retained and who has agreed to represent you.

Announcement: Trial Solutions is now CloudNine Discovery!

 

In addition to today’s regular blog post about eDiscovery case law, we have an important announcement: Trial Solutions is pleased to announce that we have officially changed our name to CloudNine Discovery!

After much discussion, we determined that a more accurate name was needed to represent our expanded products and services which have developed over the years, particularly in the areas of online data and document review hosting

We selected our new name, "CloudNine Discovery" with two goals in mind: 1) to continue providing customer service that puts our clients "on cloud nine" and 2) to lead the world in combining self-service with managed hosting and "cloud" storage.  Cloud storage is a model of networked online storage where data is stored on multiple virtual servers, generally hosted by third parties, rather than being hosted on local servers.

Our mission will continue to be to simplify the discovery process through innovative technology, transforming data hosting into a world-class experience that is easy and affordable. CloudNine Discovery will offer the same products and services offered by Trial Solutions, and our core leadership will remain intact.

As for the eDiscovery Daily blog?  While the name of the sponsor has changed, the blog will continue to provide daily eDiscovery news and analysis each and every business day, just as we always have.  We haven’t missed a day yet (knock on wood!) and will do our best to continue to provide useful information from an eDiscovery perspective.

As always, please share any comments you might have or if you'd like to know more about a particular topic.

eDiscovery Budgeting, Part 3: Understanding the Elements Contributing to Cost

 

We've spent some time in Part 1 and Part 2 of this series discussing the factors and assumptions that go into eDiscovery budgeting, but what about the concrete eDiscovery process itself? In addition to understanding the factors that go into budgeting, it's important to recognize the elements that contribute to eDiscovery costs.

There are five primary factors that contribute to the costs of eDiscovery in progress:

  • Collection: Collection of ESI can be simple and effortless, conducted by the client itself, or it may require the assistance of a hired third party to gain access to the ESI. The cost of collection can go up depending on the level of travel required. Forensic investigation and custodian interviews are not always necessary, but also increase the cost in cases requiring them.
  • Volume: The raw volume of ESI is one factor in the cost of eDiscovery, but not necessarily the one that counts. What's most important is the volume that must be reviewed by human eyes—and that can mean all of it, or only a fraction of the total ESI retrieved. It's possible to filter eDiscovery data by removing unwanted file types, limiting a search to a particular date range, or searching for relevant key words and phrases in documents. In order to moderate cost, it's usually wise to start with a more limited eDiscovery scope and expand it to cover a larger volume if necessary.  Many eDiscovery service providers offer free early cost assessment services to help attorneys estimate the volume of potentially responsive data that needs to be processed and reviewed. 
  • Number of Custodians: The number of sources involved in the collection of data can increase exponentially the amount of time and effort involved in eDiscovery, thereby increasing the cost accordingly.
  • Human Review: This is the most expensive factor in eDiscovery, requiring as much as 80% of the total eDiscovery budget.  It requires not only human beings working on an hourly wage, but time spent on training and the learning curve as they become more adept at recognizing and refining the key elements and terms required to be produced in a particular case. The more people and time involved in data review, the greater the probable expense.
  • Case Complexity: While a simple case may require a limited scope and review process, complex court cases can involve searching the same documents for multiple types of information for discovery. As a result, complex cases require more time spent on a document review strategy, as well as on a more elaborate review process.

So, what do you think? Are there any other major factors in eDiscovery budgeting or expense? Please share any comments you might have or if you'd like to know more about a particular topic.

eDiscovery Budgeting, Part 2: Key Assumptions and Choices That Affect eDiscovery Budgeting

 

Friday, we talked about assumptions and elements that contribute to cost that need to be considered when budgeting for eDiscovery activities.

Now that you know a bit about the factors surrounding the cost of eDiscovery, let's take a look at budgeting and the estimates that attorneys provide to a client before beginning eDiscovery work. The first step in budgeting is to prepare an estimate based on your and your client’s best guesses and assumptions. What are some of these assumptions?

  • Volume: Volume is almost always the largest driver of cost, as it will affect not only the quantity of data to be collected and processed, but also the amount of time human beings must spend reviewing discovery documents for relevance and privilege. Volume is also one of the more ambiguous factors. The most accurate estimate of volume is in megabytes (MB), gigabytes (GB) or terabytes (TB), but you won't always have access to these kinds of size descriptions. Instead, a client may tell you that there are "50,000 or so pages" of data, or "about 10,000 emails". The size of pages can vary widely depending on whether they are in an email, a PDF, or a word document, so it can be very difficult to estimate volume with any degree of accuracy.
  • Scope: It's wise to start with the smallest possible scope and expand if necessary, but that can be an inefficient way to review documents for eDiscovery, as it may mean going over the same files twice for different aspects of your eventual scope.
  • Efficiency: Whenever possible, it's important to plan an eDiscovery strategy in advance that will allow for a more efficient review of documents and data. The ability to maintain an efficient process of eDiscovery is largely dependent on timing and the ability to plan.
  • Timing: More time for eDiscovery activities means that the scope and search details can be refined, optimizing efficiency and minimizing costs. If the eDiscovery must be done in a hurry, efficiency suffers and costs rise.
  • Risk: Risk tolerance is a factor in cost, determining how much attention must be paid to refining every aspect of document review and data access. Mitigating risk up front through agreement and cooperation with opposing counsel can clearly define the risk so that you know where you stand.
  • Location: Where the data is located can affect costs and so can the jurisdiction of the case.  For example, different courts have provided different rulings on spoliation claims, so it’s important to consider location as part of the budgeting process.

So, what do you think? Have you found any of these assumptions to be especially problematic in your own eDiscovery budgeting estimates? Please share any comments you might have or if you'd like to know more about a particular topic.

eDiscovery Budgeting, Part 1: Assumptions and Elements that Contribute to Cost

 

While attorneys may struggle with the regional and international regulations surrounding eDiscovery, your client is likely to be less concerned with the practical legal details of your discovery request, and more concerned with the financial cost.

Whether you're working with the plaintiff or the defense, one of the most important considerations in preparing for eDiscovery is presenting the expense accurately and completely to the client – and that means understanding for yourself the factors that go into budgeting for eDiscovery. There are two main sets of elements to consider: those that affect budgeting and estimates, and those that will have a direct impact on the ultimate cost of eDiscovery.

Understanding Assumptions in eDiscovery

Because so much of the eDiscovery process cannot be predicted without accurate information, it's important to confirm any estimates from a client or from opposing counsel before proceeding with a budget.

Does your client really know the volume of data that is likely to be contained in certain files or backups, or are they providing generalized figures that may not be accurate? Do you know for certain the precise scope of the information you need to examine for discovery? Attorneys need to verify as many estimates as possible, noting any and all assumptions in their estimates so that the client can prepare for potential changes in eDiscovery costs if those early assumptions prove to be inaccurate.

eDiscovery budgeting is predicated on guesswork and assumptions that may include:

  • Volume
  • Scope
  • Efficiency
  • Risk
  • Timing

Each of these factors will be discussed in an upcoming blog post next week detailing the assumptions that go into estimating a budget for eDiscovery.

Breaking Down the Cost of eDiscovery

Once the estimate is complete and you’re ready to tackle the real work of eDiscovery, there are particular elements that contribute to the cost, while others are more minimal.

Some of the major elements comprising the cost of eDiscovery include:

  • Collection: including factors such as travel, retrieval, custodian interviews, and forensic collection (if necessary)
  • Volume of data
  • Number of custodians
  • Human review: the most expensive factor in eDiscovery costs
  • Case complexity

I'll discuss more on each of these factors in an upcoming blog post, as well.

The cost of eDiscovery can also be affected by the degree of open communication with opposing counsel. A cooperative relationship with the opposition can streamline discovery, while a contentious relationship makes it likely that discovery-related motions and court appearances will increase the total cost of this process.

So, what do you think? How much up front effort goes into your eDiscovery budgeting process? How do you monitor progress against the budget?  Please share any comments you might have or if you'd like to know more about a particular topic.

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