Remembering eDiscovery Defensibility in a Crisis

By |2020-07-08T00:30:15+00:00July 8th, 2020|Categories: eDiscovery, Technology|Tags: , , , |

Notwithstanding containment efforts, the coronavirus has spread worldwide.  According to a recent McKinsey & Co. report, the U.S. economy could be in a state of recovery until as late as 2023. The hardest-hit sectors – commercial aerospace, air & travel, and oil & gas – might not even restart until sometime in 2021. The COVID-19 pandemic is having a massive impact on a wide range of industries, including the eDiscovery space. However, despite the global crisis, litigation has not stopped and the eDiscovery process continues. Data is being collected, preserved, reviewed, and produced, hopefully in a cost-effective manner and fully-defensible manner. Pandemic-Proofing Your eDiscovery Defensibility Covid-19 has vast potential to expose flaws in the eDiscovery workflow, making the need for a defensible process more critical than ever. Here are some ways to strengthen your procedure: Collect data defensibly. Data collection from a custodian’s laptop may not be possible with social distancing guidelines unless remote enterprise-level forensic technology is available. Work with your outside and in-house counsel to formulate and document a plan ranking critical custodians’ availability. Then prioritize available network sources like file shares and email servers while deprioritizing physical media until collection is deemed safe for both collectors and collectees. The active data collection approach will vary from data source to data source, so work with your outside counsel and collection specialist on the best practices for a data source type. If your organization uses Microsoft O365, it might be time to develop a plan and approach for using the eDiscovery & Legal Hold modules in the Security and Compliance Center to streamline and document your collection efforts from Microsoft systems. Document your chain of custody. As the data transitions from its original source (e.g., Exchange, file shares, SharePoint, etc.) to the collection destination such as a [...]

DSAR Best Practices and Workflows an Organization Should Follow

By |2020-07-07T15:05:10+00:00June 30th, 2020|Categories: eDiscovery, Information Governance, Privacy|Tags: , , , , |

In my latest post, I outlined the process involved in the actual response to DSAR requests. In my last article of this series, I will discuss the best practices and workflows that your organization should follow when responding to DSAR requests. Generally, “controllers” are responsible for responding to DSARs, and “processors” assist them in handling the requests. Here are my recommendations for best practices in responding to DSARs to ensure General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) compliance: Review and Update Privacy Notices and Policies The GDPR requires organizations to inform data subjects of their rights. Companies need to make sure that their existing policies comply with the new entitlements given to data subjects by the law, including the right to: Obtain certain information from the controller beforehand, and without asking for it Be made aware of whether a controller is processing their data and how it was collected Request that inaccurate personal data about them be rectified, with communication regarding the rectification made to each recipient of the data Demand that their personal data be erased and no longer processed (right to be forgotten) Ask the controller to restrict the processing of their data Receive their data in a structure, commonly-used format for transmission elsewhere (data portability) Object to the handling of their data at any time (in certain circumstances) Not be subject to decisions based solely on automated processing Withdraw consent at any time during processing In certain circumstances, EU member states may pass legislation to limit DSAR requests under local law. One example of this is the UK’s Data Protection Act of 2018. Create and Implement a DSAR Process Your company needs to have a process in place to address: How you will enable DSARs, e.g., offering a standardized online [...]

Responding to a DSAR Request

By |2020-07-07T14:59:23+00:00June 10th, 2020|Categories: eDiscovery, Information Governance, Privacy|

In a previous post, I discussed what a DSAR is, the laws that such requests arose from, and the importance of having a systematic approach to dealing with a request. Now let us outline the process involved in the actual response to DSAR requests. An organization is required to provide a DSAR requester with a copy of any relevant information collected or stored. The time to prepare for these requests is before you receive your first DSAR and find yourself not knowing quite what to do with it. Here are the steps to follow when responding to a DSAR: Conduct a Data Inventory Before you answer a data request, you need to know where the requester’s data can be found within your organization and allow for easy access and retrieval of the requested information.  The data can come in many different forms including structured data formats which will require planning on the appropriate output format such as a PDF or CSV file to meet the request requirements. Organize DSAR Requests You will need to implement a process to classify all incoming DSARs, including who will oversee receiving and organizing the requests. This might potentially be your chief data officer (CDO), who routinely manages, secures, assesses, and oversees the collection and analysis of data.  There are technology solutions to help organize DSARs as well as other legal requests that can be implemented to manage the workflow from request to delivery. Fulfill the Request A standard process will need to be followed for identifying a valid DSAR request, verifying the requester’s identity, requesting more information, if necessary, determining if the organization possesses the requested data and if so, whether it must be provided, deciding whether charging a reasonable fee is justified (based on the administrative costs associated [...]

Mentorship During a Pandemic: Why It’s More Essential Than Ever

By |2020-07-07T15:31:45+00:00May 19th, 2020|Categories: eDiscovery|Tags: , , |

Mentorship is one of the principal keys to success, yet many people struggle to find a mentor or to establish a productive mentor/mentee relationship. At every point of my career, mentors have helped me develop and improve certain vital skills including communication, leadership, and management. What is Mentorship?  Mentorship is a relationship between two people in which the more senior person (the mentor) passes along what they have learned to the more junior individual (the mentee). But the mentee isn’t the only one who benefits from a mentor/mentee relationship. The mentor often finds great satisfaction in helping rising professionals become more knowledgeable about a particular industry or skill. After a mentoring session, I always get a boost of confidence and motivation that continues to push me grow as an individual. Mentoring is just good karma all around for everyone involved.  Why Mentorship Matters  Mentors can provide valuable insight into roles, opportunities, and guide mentees as they make critical decisions in their professional and personal lives. During the current climate of economic upheaval and social distancing, mentorship is more important than ever, even if networking events and social functions are absent.   I have been using some technology resources to facilitate individual mentorship and connect with groups of people. For more individualized mentorship activities, I have been using: EDRM Hub - a space recently launched by the EDRM to help people with careers and mentorship. “The Hub” posts job opportunities and information about those who participate in the organization then makes it easy to make connections. ACEDS Mentorship program – the professional certification organization has a structured platform entirely focused on mentorship and enhancing the mentor/mentee relationship. Facebook - I have also created a mentorship section on the highly moderated group for eDiscovery professionals on the Facebook eDiscovery page to help people make connections and obtain individual support to grow their careers. For more group mentorship activities and get the happy hour feel for networking, I’ve been using: Zoom – the go-to video conferencing application with over 200 million daily users. The background feature is fun and very easy to use. Microsoft Teams – The [...]