Hasty cloud migration may bring eDiscovery troubles
January 20, 2012
Cloud computing is on the mind of corporate IT leaders across the world in 2012 with many plotting their first large-scale migrations to virtual platforms. But in the rush to follow real or perceived market trends, companies may be overlooking how their media management strategies will affect eDiscovery processes.
With all the buzz surrounding the new data storage paradigm, it is no surprise to see cloud computing weighing heavily on the minds of IT decision-makers. According to a 2012 forecast from Unisys, cloud computing will be the top investment priority within approximately half of all corporate technology teams. However, companies must account for how their data management demands will be effected through such a migration.
"Regardless of whether your company currently relies on a cloud platform or is contemplating such a move, you need to honestly assess whether your company is currently in a position to identify, locate, preserve and produce cloud data potentially responsive to litigation or an investigation," explained Ben Barnett and Regan Crotty in their latest report for Law.com. "These questions need to be considered and worked through prior to litigation."
For any eDiscovery practitioners plotting a move into the cloud, control is an essential concept to keep in mind. According to Barnett and Crotty, migrating data offsite does not absolve companies from their legal obligations to manage that information. This makes the selection of appropriate third-party vendors all the more important. Ensuring that service level agreements are in alignment with data reproduction needs and compliance standards can limit legal liability in this sense.
Barnett and Crotty also reminded companies to consider matter of local jurisdiction. With cloud data centers often located in different countries or continents, eDiscovery practitioners must understand the rules that govern data in transit across networks and at rest on foreign servers. Neglecting these important issues could lead to the unexpected loss of business-critical records.