eDiscovery Daily Blog

Even a “Luddite” Can Learn the Ins and Outs of Data Backups with this Guide: eDiscovery Best Practices

You have to love an instructional guide that begins with a picture of Milton Waddams (the sad sack employee obsessing over his red stapler in the movie Office Space) and ends with a nice consolidated list of ten practice tips for backups in discovery.

Leave it to Craig Ball to provide that and more in the Luddite Lawyer’s Guide to Backup Systems, which Craig introduces in his Ball in Your Court blog here.  As Craig notes in his blog, this guide is an update from a primer that he wrote back in 2009 for the Georgetown E-Discovery Institute.  He has updated it to reflect the state-of-art in backup techniques and media and also added some “nifty” new stuff and graphics to illustrate concepts such as the difference between a differential and an incremental backup.  Craig even puts a “Jargon Watch” on the first page to list the terms he will define during the course of the guide.

Within this 20 page guide, Craig covers topics such as the Good and Bad of Backups, the differences between Duplication, Replication and Backup, the Major Elements of Backup Systems and the types of Backup Media and characteristics of each.  Craig illustrates how restoration to tape (despite popular opinion to the contrary) could actually be the most cost-effective way of recovering ESI in a case.  And, Craig discusses the emergence of the use of the Cloud for backups (which should come as no surprise to many of you).  He concludes with his Ten Practice Tips for Backups in Civil Discovery, which is a concise, one-page reference guide to keep handy when considering backups as part of your information governance and discovery processes.

Whether you’re a Luddite lawyer or one who is more apt to embrace technology, this guide is sure to provide an essential understanding of how backups are created and used and how they can be used during the discovery process.  Backups may be the Milton Waddams of the eDiscovery world, but they’re still important – remember that, at the end of the movie, Milton was the one relaxing on the beach with all of the money.  :o)

So, what do you think?  How do backups affect your eDiscovery process?   Please share any comments you might have or if you’d like to know more about a particular topic.

Image © Twentieth Century Fox

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