The issue of attorney-client privilege remains one of the most revered privileges that the American judicial system bestows upon clients as it enables any person to communicate open and honestly with his/her attorney. Now this right is under scrutiny as keeping communications between a defendant and his/her attorney has become difficult to achieve due to the increased role that email plays as a form of primary communication medium between them.
Category: Estorian Looking Glass
Organizations across the United States have steadily felt the sting of legal action involving eDisocovery as they are quickly discovering that it is no easy feat to comply with mandates such as the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP). This is resulting in mounting sanctions and a steadily decreasing patience in courts towards eDiscovery mistakes. However state and local government agencies were conspicuously absent from this steady stream of eDiscovery rulings.
No company regardless of its size is immune from the possibility of an eDiscovery. But even as companies look to respond to eDiscovery demands placed on them by rulings such as the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP), an equally vexing problem that they face is making sense of their growing mountain of email data.
DCIG has consistently stressed the need for good eDiscovery processes for electronically stored information (ESI). A steady stream of sanctions surrounding poor eDiscovery strategies is a consistent reminder that a lack of planning can be damaging to your case. A recent case, Ferron v. EchoStar Satellite, LLC., in one such reminder that images and links in emails can be subject to eDiscovery and that the failure to preserve them could be costly.
“As California goes, so goes the nation” is a phrase that I have heard before and it immediately came to mind when I read that Governor Schwarzenegger had signed California Assembly Bill 5, otherwise known as Chapter 5 – Electronic Discovery Act. Signed into law on June 29th, 2009, what makes this law significant is that it expands upon the verbiage used in the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP). So for organizations already worrying about the FRCP, take heed because the Electronic Discovery Act takes eDiscovery to yet another level.
When the wheels came off the American economy in the fall of 2008 there was a steady stream of companies lining up for a government bailout and none were of a higher profile than American Insurance Group (AIG). Over a chorus of jeers from the general public the United States Government set out to rescue the “Too Big to Fail” company by setting up an $85 Billion dollar reserve in exchange for 79% ownership of the company. Emotions ran high during this time period and no matter which side of the aisle you were on in regards to the bailout of AIG, the current SEC complaint against AIG will make most any person angry.
One of the most significant areas of eDiscovery is performing a relevant keyword search of data to produce the proper documents as mandated by eDiscovery requests. This collection of ESI (electronically stored information) holds particular importance as produced documents will go through a review process prior to producing these to opposing counsel. As data continues to grow within organizations eDiscovery costs continue to rise therefore it is extremely important to have a robust search that reduces non-relevant information during a search.
Admitted Bad Habits around Email Reinforce Why Companies Need to be Proactive in their Email Management Policies
Every now and then a study comes along in IT that makes you wonder if the public will ever listen to security alert messages as some of these studies yield results that quite literally make you want to throw your hands up in frustration. A case in point is the recently released study by Message Anti-Abuse Working Group (MAAWG) entitled “A Look at Consumers’ Awareness of Email Security and Practices.” However it is the report’s subtitle “Of Course, I Never Reply to Spam – Except Sometimes” is what gets to the heart of the matter and what frustrates me as it shows that email users do understand the risks of spam yet still click on the message.
A recent report from Ferris Research estimates that the total number of business e-mails sent in North America alone will surpass 139 million in 2009 and 143 million in 2010. This volume of email growth continues to put pressure on IT staff in every size organization to manage its inflow, outflow and retention. While the mechanics of managing emails inflows and outflows can be fairly straightforward, when it comes to setting policies as to how long to retain these emails, the picture can start to get a bit hazy.
Dell Makes a “Mockery” of Court System; eDiscovery Ineptness Earns Dell Contempt of Court and $25,000 Fine
First Louisiana State Court Judge Rosemary Ledet found Dell in contempt of court; then she accused Dell of making a “mockery” of the system; and then, to give her statement some teeth, she hit Dell with a $25,000 fine. Granted, a $25,000 fine is not a huge sum of money for a company like Dell and it certainly was a lot smaller than the $182,000 requested by Plaintiff’s attorneys. But the tongue lashing and ensuing fine should serve as a wake-up call to all size organizations that judicial patience in regards to eDiscovery is running thin and callous or indifferent attitudes towards eDiscovery are no longer being tolerated.