New Options in Cloud Computing and E-Discovery

Bryant Bell

In the information age, one of your biggest challenges as in-house counsel is defending the enterprise along increasingly porous electronic borders, as well as in litigation matters calling for accountability in communications of every type, from chat messages to documents on thumb drives.

Which makes cloud computing for e-discovery a matter for cautious investigation for the midsized to large corporation. As a recent article on The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel website noted:
With litigation and e-discovery on the rise, it’s important to cut costs without sacrificing quality, and cloud computing is the new “go-to” solution. Yet some litigators are hesitant to switch e-discovery databases to the cloud for fear of risks such as security breaches or data loss.

Private Cloud or Secure Hosted Options Can Allay Risk Concerns

The benefits of scalability, flexibility, and huge cost savings with cloud computing are clear. But what about the risk factor? As the article notes, one significant difference between cloud-computing offerings is whether each is based on a “private cloud” or “public cloud” architecture:
  • Private-cloud services are used by a single organization (the “single tenant”)
  • Public-cloud offerings offer private spaces to multiple organizations (“multi-tenant”) within a single cloud “space” or server environment.
More and more large corporations and enterprise organizations consider those subscription-based e-discovery services that are offered on secure, hosted (private cloud) platforms to provide effective security for their data and applications.

And there’s still one other option to consider: an e-discovery solution that only performs the more collaborative phases of the e-discovery process in the cloud while keeping the other phases inside the firewall.

“Blended” E-Discovery Structure Maps Architecture to Function

Alongside the options of e-discovery solutions that function entirely behind the firewall and those that function fully in the cloud is a blend of the two. Our EnCase® eDiscovery product was recently integrated with the market-leading CaseCentral Review solution. This enables us to offer the more collaborative processing and analysis of the review phase within a secure, hosted cloud environment, while protecting your data during the collection, preservation, and other phases of the e-discovery process.

Here’s how it works:
  • On-premises collection and preservation are done close to your data and data custodians
  • Secure hosted review and production enable collaboration among your geographically dispersed legal team—even when the infrastructure types of each member are group are very different
  • Blended on-premise or hosted processing, analysis, and early case assessment (ECA) give you the flexibility to work the way that’s best for your organization.
The good news is that cloud computing and e-discovery technologies have matured to the point that you have more options and more capability of fitting form to function.

How are you performing e-discovery in your organization?

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