RenewData Launches Data Migration Service for E-Discovery

The migration of legacy e-mails using ActiveVault conversion engine employs a legally defensible process and results in a unified archive to support e-discovery actions.

E-discovery services provider RenewData on May 21 announced the launch of a new data migration system that locates and consolidates old e-mail into a new searchable archive to create a centralized repository suitable for legal discovery.

Data Migration Services is designed to eliminate costs and risks associated with maintaining old e-mail on backup tapes or in a previous e-mail archiving system, marketing director Jake Frazier told eWEEK.

Electronic communication on legacy systems and backup tapes often is buried in backup tapes due to multiple, overlapping litigation holds. Besides e-mail, RenewData is able to migrate data such as user files, instant messages and chat, depending on the needs of the client, Frazier said.

As a result, corporations can utilize their archiving and document management solutions for data classification, search and retrieval, preservation of ESI (electronically stored information) and application of a document retention policy across all of their data, Frazier said.

RenewData, based in Austin, Texas, offers both onsite or hosted (online) storage of virtually unlimited amounts of data. All migrations are performed using the ActiveVault Conversion Engine under full chain-of-custody with a repeatable, defensible process that ensures data integrity and can be supported with RenewData expert testimony if required, Frazier said.

Result: Centralized Repository to Support Legal Discovery

"We got started [in 2001] when companies started coming to us and saying, Weve got these millions of backup tapes and dont know where to start to get them organized and accessible," Frazier said. "We started as strictly a service to law firms, but now were branching out to financial, insurance, media and other verticals."

Frazier said an insurance-industry customer came to the company with 354 TB of raw data and wanted to get it under control. "We boiled it all down to 16 TB, and now its completely archived and ready for any kind of legal discovery action," Frazier said.

RenewData uses its long list of partnerships to provide various data migration services from a variety of sources, such as CA Message Manager (formerly Assentor), Lotus Notes, Novell GroupWise, Microsoft Exchange, backup tapes and platters, and can rapidly migrate large amounts of data into many top e-mail archiving systems, such as Symantec Enterprise Vault and EMC EmailXtender.

RenewDatas proprietary technology has the ability to bypass the legacy application and directly access content-addressable storage, Frazier said. Then, RenewData uses its ActiveVault Conversion Engine platform to deduplicate the emails by custodians and convert the data into a format that can be ingested by the email archive.

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"Our ActiveVault infrastructure allows us to rapidly process and migrate large volumes of data," said Joe Venturella, senior vice president of legal solutions at RenewData. "Our customers are then able to maximize the value of their new system and enhance their ability to meet tight e-discovery timeframes."

In addition, if a corporation becomes involved in litigation during the process of a conversion, RenewData also offers the capability of producing data to satisfy legal discoveries from the same data set that is being migrated, without disrupting the process, Frazier said. To assist companies in determining whether they have dormant liability as a result of storing backup tapes, RenewData has developed a free, detailed risk calculator available here.

Market Perspective on RenewData

"In addition to protecting their e-mail and messaging data for business continuity and disaster recovery reasons, enterprises need to preserve it accurately for both compliance and civil litigation reasons," David Hill, principal analyst with the Mesabi Group in Westwood, Mass., told eWEEK.

"Yet the data may be locked in a mess in a legacy system that is not capable of responding to those needs. RenewData helps with mess management. That is, it provides a way to migrate from a legacy software platform to a new software platform while maintaining chain of custody requirements that enable the data to meet legal requirements for being submitted as evidence. Many enterprises will need this kind of migration service."

RenewData was founded as a service for the legal profession. What advantages are there for them, coming out of the legal business, to move into the larger marketplace with this product?

"RenewData has not only the software that can do the actual migration, but also has the skills, knowledge and resources to actually do the migration within the confines of its own data center," Hill said. "Lots of people can replicate the data center skills, but few have the legal experience to make everything work just right."

What sets RenewData apart?

"RenewData provides a black box data center for the migration services, which others do not provide," Hill said. "The data center is a black box because it takes the input in the form of media (tape, optical or even disk arrays) from a customers legacy system. It performs the migration within a closed data center [no Internet access, for example] which is therefore a black box, because no one else can see inside.

"The output from the black box is media in the format that is needed by the new system. Others do not provide such a data center migration capability," Hill said.

The Data Migration Services archiving service is available now. For pricing information, see the RenewData Web site.

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Chris Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger is Editor-in-Chief of eWEEK and responsible for all the publication's coverage. In his 13 years and more than 4,000 articles at eWEEK, he has distinguished himself in reporting...