Providing IT with Transparency to the Data

By Deidre Paknad  |  Posted 2011-01-04 Print this article Print

Consideration No. 1: Does the legal hold application provide IT with transparency to the data in the systems that are on hold?

Some legal hold applications simply send e-mail messages to individual IT staff members, alerting them to holds by case number. In this case, only a few people in IT are aware of what data can't be moved, modified, altered or retired. If IT staff must fish through their e-mail box to find which notices apply at any point in time, they will be unable to efficiently manage data and risks, retiring or recycling the wrong data.

Consideration No. 2: Who benefits from the data source mapping features if they exist?

Beware of data source mapping features that provide legal with a list of systems for discovery when there are no corresponding features for IT! The legal hold application should make it easy for IT to update the data source list. It should provide a view of value to IT including knowing in real time which data sources legal has targeted for any given matter, knowing the discovery and retention parameters for a system, and knowing what governance requirements apply to the system. When legal knows what data sources have been identified in a hold but IT doesn't, data preservation in those systems is at risk.

Deidre Paknad is President and CEO of PSS Systems. Deidre is also the founder of the Compliance, Governance and Oversight Council (CGOC), a professional community on retention and preservation. Deidre is widely credited with having conceived and launched the first commercial applications for legal holds, collections and retention management in 2004. She is a well-respected thought leader in the legal and information governance domain. Deidre has been a member of several Sedona working groups since 2005 and leads the EDRM/IMRM working group. She shares her insight on information governance and the process maturity model in her blog, IMHO by Deidre Paknad. Deidre is a seasoned entrepreneur and executive with 20 years of experience applying technology to poorly functioning business processes in order to reduce cost and risk. She has been profiled in several books and articles for entrepreneurship, most recently in Business Lessons from the Edge by Jim McCormick and Grade A Entrepreneurs by Marylene Delbourg Delphis. She graduated from the University of California. She can be reached at

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