Tackling Data Drives Savings and Security

A large services company was facing enterprise data overload. It had saved all of its emails from the past 10 years, totaling hundreds of terabytes of data, and was adding nearly 2 million more emails per day. Some of this data was stored on poorly labeled backup tapes, and much of it contained loose file attachments with sensitive client data.

Situation

Due to the size of the email archive, basic e-discovery searches on the company’s in-house software were taking weeks and often would fail, impairing the legal team’s ability to quickly assess or respond to matters. In addition, by saving this data, the company was making itself eligible for legal and regulatory matters, potentially leading to unnecessarily large e-discovery costs down the road. Finally, due to the sensitive client information contained within these emails, the company could possibly be the target of a harmful data breach.

Our Role

The company’s C-suite realized it needed to get its data house in order and clean up its archive, migrate to new systems and develop and implement company-wide policies to successfully embrace the updated program.

FTI Consulting’s Information Governance, Privacy & Security (“IGP&S”) group was brought in to handle the challenge — from making sense of the legacy data and preserving data under legal holds to developing, rolling out, training on and enforcing a new data-retention program.

FTI Consulting’s team began several concurrent workstreams, including:

  • Seconding IGP&S employees on-site to help manage and staff projects, conduct managed review and leverage technology from providers including IBM, Nuix, Integro and Index Engines
  • Extracting more than 1.5 billion emails from the legacy system
  • Classifying data with artificial intelligence and analytics
  • Removing backups
  • Implementing a new process and technology for e-discovery

Impact

This large and complex project helped the services company cost-effectively reduce its risk, get its legacy data in order, eliminate what it doesn’t need and better protect and manage the data that is important. Searches that previously took weeks now return results in less than an hour, allowing the legal team to quickly respond to matters. The legal team can better handle legal, regulatory and investigative matters moving forward with updated e-discovery software and processes.