Direct Indexing Beats Restoration

The traditional method of getting data off tape has been to restore the content. Restoration uses the original backup software to remove data from tape and bring it back online in order to begin the discovery process. Direct indexing and extraction is a more intelligent process. This process was invented by Index Engines and it significantly streamlines the collection of ESI from tape. Extraction does not require the backup software to access tape content. Additionally, extraction leverages the index to understand data at a file and email level. Using direct indexing and extraction you can review the contents on tape, find relevant content and extract what is interesting from tape. Direct indexing is a non-invasive scan of the tape that allows intelligence to be obtained about the contents; files types, dates, custodians, etc… Extraction allows the selection and specific content to be gathered. Restoration requires you to restore data first before you can find the relevant content. It’s a radically different process. The benefits of extraction over restore are clear savings of both time and money.

Off the Shelf EDD Tools Examined

Jason Krause, writing for Law.com, recently published an article encouraging a closer look at how the over 600 eDiscovery solutions on the market are built. While some argue that fancy bells and whistles make the solutions slick, Krause dives into the technology supporting these tools. Index Engines‘ Jim McGann contributes to this article with details about the limitations of Lucene, the common open source code many vendors are using. Index Engines, using patented purpose built technology, far exceeds the capabilities of the open source platforms. After all, bells and whistles are useless if the underpinnings of the platform aren’t up to snuff. Read the full Law.com article here.

Case Law Cites Index Engines

The courts are starting to understand the benefits of using Index Engines in the collection of ESI, especially from backup tapes. In the recent case, Goshawk Dedicated and Kite Dedicated v American Viatical (Case No. 1:05-CV-2343-RWS Document 506 filed 12/08/2009) the judge issued a report on the production of ESI in support of the case. The original collection was to be focused on approximately 1TB of online data, however the decision was made to perform this collection on backup tape. The reasons given were, “backup tapes (a) would provide a more direct and economical route to responsive ESI vs. searching the online data. (b) would entail considerably less business disruption. The court also went on to direct the use of Index Engines for the collection of ESI for this case.

The fact that courts are now mandating the use of Index Engines for collection of ESI from backup tapes versus online data show how far we have come with respect to the inaccessibility argument. In the past many cases have argued backup tapes are burdensome. Now we see cases where tapes are not cited as burdensome, but are in fact determined to be less burdensome and more economical when compared to online ESI collection.

Partnership Streamlines EDRM Implementation

Index Engines and Venio Systems recently announced their partnership aimed at delivering an
end to end EDRM e-Discovery solution. The combination of these technologies handles eDiscovery from the identification phase through the production phase of the Electronic Discovery Reference Model.

Index Engines and Venio Systems are complimentary solutions. Index Engines provides broad identification and collection capabilities, including support for extraction of content from backup tapes. Venio FPR provides best of breed early case assessment and review capabilities on data collected by Index Engines as well as their own ingestion tools. As such, we have developed a joint go to market strategy that provides a comprehensive EDRM solution. Prior to working with Index Engines, Venio Systems collection capability was limited to online data – backup tape data had to first be restored. Additionally indexing speeds were limited to 30 – 40 GB per hour. In partnering with Index Engines, Venio FPR can now support direct identification and collection of ESI from backup tapes without restoring the content, and also index large volumes of ESI at speeds up to 1TB/hour depending on the network environment. Index Engines will benefit from Venio FPR’s cutting edge early case assessment and review capabilities.

Index Engines and Venio Systems will partner on joint sales and marketing activity in order to promote the benefits of a comprehensive end-to-end EDRM platform. Read the full press release about this partnership here.

That’s The Way The Burden Crumbles

The eDiscovery industry is watching the burden argument erode. eDiscovery service providers are critical to the delivery of ESI to the courts, and must be prepared to perform ESI collection regardless of location. Saying that proprietary environments, such as backup tapes, are not accessible is quickly becoming a thing of the past. Legal teams that use this strategy are exposing themselves to sanctions and fines. Recent 2010 rulings are substantiating this.

First Judge Scheindlin found the plaintiffs in the University of Montreal pension fund case to be grossly negligent for lapses in the preservation and collection of responsive electronic documents. The Judge went on to order the collection of data from backup tapes to those plaintiffs that attempted to cite the burden argument. Read the full opinion here.

Just recently released was the opinion from the Starbucks vs. ADT Security case, where ADT attempted to use the burden argument citing $834,285 to collect five custodian mailboxes. The court found this claim exaggerated and declined to find the information at issue “not reasonably accessible” and ordered the production of the ESI.

The new white paper published by Jeff Fehrman of Integreon shows the real-world data behind this erosion. Performing discovery on the same set of tapes, first in 2005 and again in 2009, Integreon documents the differences in speed, time and cost, then vs. now. Considering the time consuming restoration and manual analysis need in 2005, the burden argument was a valid claim. This new white paper demonstrates that the implementation of discovery technology from Index Engines which nets a 50% savings in time and 75% savings in cost for the same tape discovery project. Integreon’s metrics illustrate that the burden has truly been undone, and why the arguments still claiming it are crumbling. Read the full Integreon White paper; E-Discovery for Backup Tapes: How Technology is Easing the Burden, here.

Backup Tape Access – Doing a 180

Craig Ball, noted forensics guru, just published an article in Law Technology News that caught our attention. In this article, The Lowdown on Backups, Craig states that backup tapes have a bad reputation stating, “Backup tape has long been the poster child for ESI deemed “not reasonably accessible… you can’t search backup tapes unless you restore them, and everyone knows it’s a slow, laborious and expensive task.” However since Index Engines has come into the picture Craig is taking the position that “sometimes backup tapes will be the easiest, most cost-effective source of ESI.”

What happened is Index Engines automated the process and eliminated expensive, time consuming tape restoration. Craig recognizes Index Engines contribution stating, “The most striking progress in working with data on tape is seen in tools such as those from Index Engines, which index and deduplicate tape on-the-fly.” Getting the word out is helping generate tape processing activity for Index Engines and our partners. With the new understanding that tape data is as accessible as online data, we are seeing the shift in the perception of historical backup tapes. As Craig states in the article, “we may have reached the point where backups are not that much harder or costlier to deal with than dispersed active data, and they’re occasionally the smarter first resort in e-discovery.” Read the full Law Technology News article here.

LegalTech Buzz

The LegalTech show in New York this week was a great event all around. The general consensus from everyone that we spoke with was that the eDiscovery market seems to be on the upswing from any sort of lull there may have been last year. The isles were crowded, the prospects were qualified and the conversations were serious.

And the hot topic or constant theme that we saw in the Index Engines booth was consistently, “Wow!” We heard more than once, “What can’t you do??” When telling folks what was new, about Index Engines full support for Lotus Notes, people voiced appreciation for how difficult a hurdle that was to clear. The news of Index Engines validated 1 TB/hr/node processing speed, again and again met with people asking, “How fast?”, “For full content indexing?” And then there were also the people who were encountering us for the first time. We demo’d the product for an eDiscovery service provider who was so excited about indexing his clients tapes, instead of outsourcing these projects, that he kept tripping over his words.

The concept of making data truly discoverable is Index Engines’ mission. The Unified Platform – LTN’s Best New Product for 2009 – is making that happen. The partners, prospects and even competitors who visited our booth at LegalTech this year, saw that true enterprise class information discovery is on the very near horizon.

Index Engines Expands Its Network and Capabilities

At LegalTech in New York today, Index Engines is making two announcements. The first is around the platform enhancement which now includes full support for Lotus Notes email, and all unstructured data and email backed up with CommVault and UltraBac. Support for Lotus Notes joins already supported Exchange and internet based email. The list of supported backup formats now includes: Netbackup, BackupExec, TSM, ArcServe, Networker, NTbackup, CommVault and UltraBac. Read this announcement in full here.

The second announcement features the partnership between LECG and Index Engines. These two market leaders have entered into a partnership that will leverage LECG’s expertise with Index Engines marketing leading technology. LECG has chosen to implement Index Engines technology, the only solution that can collect data from backup tapes without costly restoration, and also process online data at speeds of 1TB, into their DC3 solutions. This combination of functionality and know-how will enable LECG customers to implement the best eDiscovery projects possible. Read the full press release here.

Visit Index Engines at LegalTech NY, Feb 1-3, 2010 at the Hilton New York Hotel (Avenue of the Americas and 53rd Street) in booth 2119 to see a live demo of the Unified Platform, winner of LTN’s Gold New Product of 2009, with Lotus Notes, CommVault and UltraBac support and to learn more about how Index Engines will be integrated into LECG’s DC3 solutions.

The Changing face of ESI Collection

On January 11th in the case of Bank of Montreal Judge, Scheindlin issued a very important opinion. Judge Scheindlin’s opinion tie closely to the famous Zubulake case. In this event, the legal teams went into the case not prepared with the relevant ESI. The judge found them negligent – and ruled that if they cannot find data online in corporate networks they must to go to backup tapes. What this means for law firms or enterprises is to put more emphasis on ESI collection, including backup tapes, or face negligence fines down the road. Combine the weight of Schendlin’s opinion with Craig Ball’s most recent white paper, which proposed that backup tape might actually be the best place to conduct eDiscovery due to the tamper-proof nature, and what you have is a shift in the importance of tape discovery in the market. If the courts mirror Scheindlin’s sentiments, and eDiscovery experts adopt Ball’s beliefs, then tape is going to become a focal point for future eDiscovery. With new technology, such as Index Engines, making the search and collection of tape data, fast, easy and cost effective, it really is only a matter of time, until tapes are considered the next generation of legal hold.

Meet Index Engines at LegalTech

Index Engines is preparing for the upcoming LegalTech show, Feb 1-3, 2010 at the Hilton New York Hotel (Avenue of the Americas and 53rd Street). We will be exhibiting in booth #2119 and demonstrating Index Engines Unified Platform, winner of the LTN Gold Award for Best New Product of 2009.

If you are interested in saving significant time and money related to data discovery and information management, contact Index Engines to meet with our executives at the show. Specifically, if you are spending large amounts of money storing backup tapes offsite, or committing hefty budgets to engage eDiscovery services providers, Index Engines technology and our partner network can help. Our ability to index data in backup formats and process online data at speeds over 1 TB/Hr/node enables litigation readiness like never before.

Index Engines will also be announcing major new functionality at LegalTech. For a private demonstration of the new capabilities and to discuss your specific need or application, contact Index Engines today.