E-Discovery Concerns?

Filed in by Lizetta Staplefoote | January 4, 2011 12:09 pm

Our competitors just lost a harassment case because they couldn’t produce emails from seven years ago. How can we avoid the same fate?

Because many storage and backup systems were designed before email became the main means of business communication, they aren’t built to make the process of search, retrieval, and export easy. Worse, many of those antiquated systems automatically delete files after a specified period – messages that could later be the cornerstone of a future legal or regulatory battle. Deploying an email archiving system on site to address these issues can be costly. From hardware to software to day-to-day maintenance, costs can add up quickly. To avoid the risk of an outdated or ill-equipped storage system and eliminate the costs of onsite deployment, implement a simple hosted archiving system.

Choosing Hosted Email Archiving

A hosted email archiving service utilizes a web-based storage system managed by a trusted provider. Before you choose a hosted email archiving system, here are some questions to ask:

How is Data Stored? Most email archiving providers store multiple copies of data across geographically dispersed, secure data centers. Often the level of security at a provider’s data center rivals what most small to medium size business could deploy. That security should also extend to data encryption during transport between you and the data center.

What Search Features are Included? Business-grade search features should include the ability to tag messages for easier compilation, to apply legal holds to tag messages included in ongoing litigation, and to export retrieved messages in a variety of standard file formats.

How Do You Ensure Message Integrity? Your chosen provider should include some sort of WORM-compliant feature to ensure messages are preserved in their original form. Further, make sure that all related pieces of the message, metadata, attachments, and header data, are also maintained and retrievable.

Is Your System Compatible with Our Email System? Because not all email clients store information the same way, it’s best to confirm that your system works with their system. If you’re running two separate email systems or email domains, inquire as to how the provider handles indexing data from multiple sources and if that works for your business.

For Rackspace email hosting customers, Rackspace Archiving offers all of the features needed to address secure email storage and compliance readiness.  

Source URL: http://www.rackspace.com/blog/e-discovery_concerns/