Sarah Vouga – Waterford Technologies
In December of 2006, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedures (FRCP) was amended to say that communications, (emails, texts, instant messages etc) files, directives and requests that may be relevant to a current or future litigation cannot simply be deleted or overwritten. By this amendment, organizations must know exactly where data is stored, what data storage technology is used to backup and maintain records, how the retention schedule applies, how long it will take to produce them, and what format they can be produced in. The focal point of this amendment is that the data must be produced. Therefore, one can almost assume and infer that you need an email archiving solution, as dictated by law.
In Plain English
|Rule 26(a) 1 and 3||Electronically stored information is discoverable and lawyers must discuss ESI in the initial planning conference and specifically include it in the initial mandatory disclosures.||All electronic documents and data must be produced. You must know at the beginning of the case what relevant electronic information you have, where it is, and how hard it is to access.|
Rule 26(a) 2
|Disclosure can only be denied when not “reasonably accessible”||You must be able to quickly produce all relevant electronic information from active systems.|
|Addresses when cost or effort justifies not producing documents.||You must know early on in proceedings if documents exist that will be costly producing.|
|Rule 26(b)(5)||Protects against privileged information leaks||Allows counsel to safely share information.|
Tamper Proof Email Archive
It was around this same time that one of our clients, who works for a graduate nursing college, realized that he needed a tamper-proof, central, searchable repository of every email coming to and leaving from his company. There wasn’t any impending legal doom that hung over his head forcing him to go back and find specific emails. Frankly, it was as simple as being frustrated with continuously backing up the emails to tape and that the backup times were exponentially taking longer and longer. He didn’t want a cumbersome solution that would require hardware in addition to software. He didn’t want a solution that didn’t have updates or lacked in support. “I like easy,” he kept saying on the phone. “The rule of thumb is- you give your hardest project to your laziest employee- they’re going to find the easiest and simplest solution to quickly get the job done.” Apparently, that was how his network engineer had stumbled upon us- a simple google search and- BAZINGA. A full email archiving solution that would only require software download with user friendly implementation process. “What separated you from the other competitors that I had been researching on my own was credibility and backing. They may have been heavily branded and well known, but upon digging into their customer reviews, and again, you have to dig, you find those overlooked gripes people have, and those gripes were a big deal to me.”
Results for our client were almost instantaneous. “It just kind of dawned on us that even though we weren’t foreseeably about to be facing any legal recourse, that having an email archive was a logical conclusion based on the amendment that was made to FRCP. We were loyal users of backing up to tape. The process to back up our Exchange server was pitiful, awful, and time consuming. Now, it’s a breeze! Better yet, when I had a professor call me in a panic that he had deleted an email with code for his Microsoft application, I was able to find it in minutes. Even more reassuring- he had deleted that email 2 years ago only just realizing it when he actually needed it and it still only took a few minutes for me to find. It’s like having my own personal secret superhero within the confines of my work environment. I don’t do any of the work anymore. MailMeter does. Your email archiving software saves the day time and time again.”
For more information on how MailMeter can be a superhero for you, call us today!
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