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Stroz Friedberg Snaps Up Elysium Digital

August 20, 2015

Cybersecurity, investigation, and risk-management firm Stroz Friedberg has a made a new acquisition, we learn from their announcement, “Stroz Friedberg Acquires Technology Litigation Consulting Firm Elysium Digital” (PDF). Though details of the deal are not revealed, the write-up tells us why Elysium Digital is such a welcome addition to the company:

“Founded in 1997, Elysium Digital has worked with law firms, in-house counsel, and government agencies nationally. The firm has provided a broad range of services, including expert testimony, IP litigation consulting, eDiscovery, digital forensics investigations, and security and privacy investigations. Elysium played a role in the key technology/legal issues of its time and established itself as a premier firm providing advice and quality technical analysis in high-stakes legal matters. The firm specialized in deciphering complex technology and effectively communicating findings to clients, witnesses, judges, and juries.

“‘The people of Elysium Digital possess highly sought after technical skills that have allowed them to tackle some of the most complex IP matters in recent history. Bringing this expertise into Stroz Friedberg will allow us to more fully address the needs of our clients around the world, not just in IP litigation and digital forensics, but across our cyber practices as well,’ said Michael Patsalos-Fox, CEO of Stroz Friedberg.”

The workers of Elysium Digital will be moving into Stroz Friedberg’s Boston office, and its co-founders will continue to play an important role, we’re told. Stroz Friedberg expects the acquisition to bolster their capabilities in the areas of digital forensics, intellectual-property litigation consulting, eDiscovery, and data security.

Founded in 2000, Stroz Friedberg says their guiding principle is to “seek truth” for their clients. Headquartered in New York City, the company maintains offices throughout the U.S. as well as in London, Hong Kong, and Zurich.

Cynthia Murrell, August 20, 2015

Sponsored by ArnoldIT.com, publisher of the CyberOSINT monograph

Social Media Litigation is On the Rise

August 12, 2015

When you think about social media and litigation, it might seem it would only come up during a civil, domestic, criminal mischief, or even a thievery suit.  Businesses, however, rely on social media outlets like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to advertise their services, connect with their clients, and increase their Web presence.  It turns out that social media is also playing a bigger role not only for social cases, but for business ones as well.  The X1 eDiscovery Law and Tech Blog posted about the “Gibson Dunn Report: Number of Cases Involving Social Media Evidence ‘Skyrocket’” and how social media litigation has increased in the first half of 2015.

The biggest issue the post discusses is the authenticity of the social media evidence.  A person printing out a social media page or summarizing the content for court does not qualify as sufficient evidence.  The big question right now is how to guarantee that social media passes an authenticity test and can withstand the court proceedings.

This is where eDiscovery software comes into play:

“These cases cited by Gibson Dunn illustrate why best practices software is needed to properly collect and preserve social media evidence. Ideally, a proponent of the evidence can rely on uncontroverted direct testimony from the creator of the web page in question. In many cases, such as in the Vayner case where incriminating social media evidence is at issue, that option is not available. In such situations, the testimony of the examiner who preserved the social media or other Internet evidence “in combination with circumstantial indicia of authenticity (such as the dates and web addresses), would support a finding” that the website documents are what the proponent asserts.”

The post then goes into a spiel about how the X1 Social Discovery software can make social media display all the “circumstantial indicia” or “additional confirming circumstances,” for solid evidence in court.  What authenticates social media is the metadata and a MD5 checksum aka “hash value.” What really makes the information sink in is that Facebook apparently has every twenty unique metadata fields, which require eDiscovery software to determine authorship and the like.  It is key to know that everything leaves a data trail on the Internet, but the average Google search is not going to dig it up.

Whitney Grace, August 12, 2015
Sponsored by ArnoldIT.com, publisher of the CyberOSINT monograph

Social Media Litigation Is on the Rise

August 6, 2015

When you think about social media and litigation, it might seem it would only come up during a civil, domestic, criminal mischief, or even a thievery suit.  Businesses, however, rely on social media outlets like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to advertise their services, connect with their clients, and increase their Web presence.  It turns out that social media is also playing a bigger role not only for social cases, but for business ones as well.  The X1 eDiscovery Law and Tech Blog posted about the “Gibson Dunn Report: Number of Cases Involving Social Media Evidence ‘Skyrocket’” and how social media litigation has increased in the first half of 2015.

The biggest issue the post discusses is the authenticity of the social media evidence.  A person printing out a social media page or summarizing the content for court does not qualify as sufficient evidence.  The big question right now is how to guarantee that social media passes an authenticity test and can withstand the court proceedings.

This is where eDiscovery software comes into play:

“These cases cited by Gibson Dunn illustrate why best practices software is needed to properly collect and preserve social media evidence. Ideally, a proponent of the evidence can rely on uncontroverted direct testimony from the creator of the web page in question. In many cases, such as in the Vayner case where incriminating social media evidence is at issue, that option is not available. In such situations, the testimony of the examiner who preserved the social media or other Internet evidence “in combination with circumstantial indicia of authenticity (such as the dates and web addresses), would support a finding” that the website documents are what the proponent asserts.”

The post then goes into a spiel about how the X1 Social Discovery software can make social media display all the “circumstantial indicia” or “additional confirming circumstances,” for solid evidence in court.  What authenticates social media is the metadata and a MD5 checksum aka “hash value.” What really makes the information sink in is that Facebook apparently has every twenty unique metadata fields, which require eDiscovery software to determine authorship and the like.  It is key to know that everything leaves a data trail on the Internet, but the average Google search is not going to dig it up.

Whitney Grace, August 6, 2015
Sponsored by ArnoldIT.com, publisher of the CyberOSINT monograph

Welcome YottaSearch

May 26, 2015

There is another game player in the world of enterprise search: Yotta Data Technologies announced their newest product: “Yotta Data Technologies Announces Enterprise Search And Big Data Analytics Platform.”  Yotta Data Technologies is known for its affordable and easy to use information management solutions. Yotta has increased its solutions by creating YottaSearch, a data analytics and search platform designed to be a data hub for organizations.

“YottaSearch brings together the most powerful and agile open source technologies available to enable today’s demanding users to easily collect data, search it, analyze it and create rich visualizations in real time.  From social media and email for Information Governance and eDiscovery to web and network server logs for Information Technology Operations Analytics (ITOA), YottaSearch™ provides the Big Data Analytics for users to derive information intelligence that may be critical to a project, case, business unit or market.”

YottaSearch uses the popular SaaS model and offers users not only data analytics and search, but also knowledge management, information governance, eDiscovery, and IT operations analytics.  Yotta decided to create YottaSearch to earn revenue from the burgeoning big data market, especially the enterprise search end.

The market is worth $1.7 billion, so Yotta has a lot of competition, but if they offer something different and better than their rivals they stand a chance to rise to the top.

Whitney Grace, May 26, 2015
Sponsored by ArnoldIT.com, publisher of the CyberOSINT monograph

Annual Ranking of Legal Sector Puts Omnivere at the Top

May 6, 2015

The article titled Omnivere Voted Best National End-To-End Ediscovery, Managed Ediscovery & Litigation Support, and Data & Technology Provider in 2015 Best of the National Law Journal on Blackbird discusses the ranking and what it means. This is an annual ranking that is conducted with readers of The National Law Journal & Legal Times casting ballots based on their experiences with their own legal services. Omnivere won this year’s legal sector “best in show.” The article states,

“In less than a year, OmniVere has established itself as a trailblazer in the next wave of data and technology consulting, eDiscovery services and litigation support. In creating an in-house team of expert, veteran data consultants, including former senior leadership from FTI, Navigant Consulting, Integreon, Recommind, Xerox and Berkeley Research Group, OmniVere is well positioned to deliver a range of products and services on a global playing field.”
Omnivere was launched in May 2014 and rapidly grew into one of the biggest and most sought-after companies for its work in litigation support and discovery management. Erik Post, Omnivere President, is quoted in the article celebrating the win and the overall success of the company. He suggests that in spite of their new brand, the work and abilities of the staff is “resonating across the country.”

Chelsea Kerwin, May 6, 2014

Sponsored by ArnoldIT.com, publisher of the CyberOSINT monograph

Juvenile Journal Behavior

April 28, 2015

Ah, more publisher  excitement. Neuroskeptic, a blogger at Discover, weighs in on a spat between scientific journals in, “Academic Journals in Glass Houses….” The write-up begins by printing a charge lobbed at Frontiers in Psychology by the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease (JNMD), in which the latter accuses the former of essentially bribing peer reviewers. It goes on to explain the back story, and why the blogger feels the claim against Frontiers is baseless. See the article for those details, if you’re curious.

Here’s the part that struck me: Neuroskeptic  supplies the example hinted at in his or her headline:

“For the JNMD to question the standards of Frontiers peer review process is a bit of a ‘in glass houses / throwing stones’ moment. Neuroskeptic readers may remember that it was JNMD who one year ago published a paper about a mysterious device called the ‘quantum resonance spectrometer’ (QRS). This paper claimed that QRS can detect a ‘special biological wave… released by the brain’ and thus accurately diagnose schizophrenia and other mental disorders – via a sensor held in the patient’s hand. The article provided virtually no details of what the ‘QRS’ device is, or how it works, or what the ‘special wave’ it is supposed to measure is. Since then, I’ve done some more research and as far as I can establish, ‘QRS’ is an entirely bogus technology. If JNMD are going to level accusations at another journal, they ought to make sure that their own house is in order first.”

This is more support for the conclusion that many of today’s “academic” journals cannot be trusted. Perhaps the profit-driven situation will be overhauled someday, but in the meantime, let the reader beware.

Cynthia Murrell, April 28, 2015

Sponsored by ArnoldIT.com, publisher of the CyberOSINT monograph

Legal Technology Update

March 20, 2015

It seems that the field of legal tech is making progress. Above the Law reports on “Today’s (Legal) Tech: The State of Legal Technology in 2015.” Writer Nicole Black attended the LegalTech New York conference. She highly recommends this conference to her colleagues in the legal technology field, by the way. She also came away with a list of new legal tools. Be aware, though, that e-discovery and information-governance solutions are not among them; those areas just aren’t her cup of tea. Black writes:

“Whenever I attend LegalTech, one of my goals is to learn about new and interesting legal tools that are NOT related to e-discovery or information governance, since these areas simply don’t interest me. Trying to locate vendors with offerings outside of these two categories is no small task at LegalTech. The conference organizers seem to be single-mindedly focused on these subjects and you can’t walk more than two feet in the Exhibit Hall without tripping over a booth offering software related to either topic.

“But, I doggedly sifted through the slew of emails I received from vendors until I found a few with products that interested me. As is the case every year, a theme seems to emerge after I’ve met with the various vendors, and this year it was documents, documents, and more documents.”

Black goes on to list several vendors of interest. She met with three offering litigation-prep document management, Factbox, Allegory, and Opus 2 Magnum. Each works a little differently from the others, she notes. Then there’s Redact Assistant, which simplifies the removal of sensitive content; Plainlegal, which supplies document automation for IP filings; and Brainloop, which offers virtual data rooms to enhance collaboration. The final entry, Box, is a general online-document storage and collaboration tool that has been making inroads into the legal space.

Black wraps up her article with a description of swag found at the conference, but I’ll let you navigate to the article for those card-game-related details. It sounds like the conference was a lot of fun.

Cynthia Murrell, March 19, 2015

Stephen E Arnold, Publisher of CyberOSINT at www.xenky.com

Predictive Coding Slowly Making Waves in Discovery Processes

January 28, 2015

The article on Above the Law titled Predictive Coding Slowly Becoming a Game Changer discusses the ramifications of the Da Silva Moore vs. Publicis Groupe ruling whereby attorneys were enabled to use predictive coding to aid in the process of reviewing documents for relevance. It is possible that predictive coding could save a huge amount of the cost of discovery by severely reducing the need for manual review. But the benefits don’t end there,

“Some contend that predictive coding—when used appropriately—is also more accurate than manual document review. Earlier this year, Judge Denise Cote of the Southern District of New York recognized the reliability of predictive coding:

I think there’s every reason to believe that, if [predictive coding is] done correctly, it may be more reliable — not just as reliable but more reliable than manual review, and certainly more cost effective — cost effective for the plaintiff and the defendants.”

Clearly, predictive coding is about more than cost savings. Remember the
clients? Computers aren’t subject to fatigue or inconsistent judgment, making predictive coding a far more reliable method than manual review. New York, Tennessee, Virginia, Georgia and Delaware have all approved predicted coding in court, and the article suggests that the main issue with predictive coding becoming more widespread is that many attorneys are not familiar with the technology.

Chelsea Kerwin, January 28, 2014

Sponsored by ArnoldIT.com, developer of Augmentext

How to Handle the Ever-Changing Landscape of eDiscovery

December 26, 2014

The article titled Five eDiscovery Lessons from Top Firms That Lawyers Can Implement Now on Above The Law offers advice culled from the strategies of successful firms. Several of the tips are simple enough, that lawyers should focus their goals and research and remember that in spite of the amount of information out there, cases are typically still “won and lost with a handful of witnesses and a few dozen documents.” The article also warns against overhyping predictive coding, as well as being overly cautious about judicial approval of technology. Perhaps the most interesting advice is item #5, which suggests flexibility and creativity in the most innovative firms,

“(They may not be the firms you think…).These firms are willing to accept and even embrace the reality that discovery is a messy process and knowledge of the case is constantly evolving. The firms that are able to get through it the best are doing so by building flexible workflows that can adapt to changes in the understanding of the case. They are willing to experiment with search technologies and processes to find the key information in their data.”

Ultimately the article claims that it is grappling with the constant evolution of eDiscovery technology that will set certain lawyers and their firms apart.

Chelsea Kerwin, December 26, 2014

Sponsored by ArnoldIT.com, developer of Augmentext

Information Governance Standards Group Suggests Caution in Approaching eDiscovery

November 14, 2014

The records management group ARMA International weighs in about search with an article in their Information Management magazine: “Enterprise Search vs E-Discovery Search: Same or Different?” The short answer, not surprisingly, is “different.” Writer Kamal Shah explains:

“To date, most enterprises have used the same search technologies for both tasks. However, a recent trend among large and small enterprises suggests that a significant divergence is occurring between enterprise searches and e-discovery searches. Both start by entering a search term in a search box, but that’s where the similarities end. The business requirements are different and, as a result, each needs different capabilities.”

The article goes on to elaborate on the reasons traditional enterprise search is not sufficient for most eDiscovery needs. For example, while a regular enterprise user may be looking for the top five or 10 documents that relate to a search term, a firm performing an eDiscovery search in response to litigation must turn up all relevant documents (while minimizing irrelevant clutter.) Users of eDiscovery must also be prepared to prove in court that they followed best practices in assembling their data. Shah summarizes:

“Conducting e-discovery for litigation or an investigation using enterprise search technology is a risky gamble that can result in negative outcomes in court, penalties, and excessive litigation costs.”

See the article for more details, but the upshot is clear: eDiscovery is an environment where it is becoming increasingly crucial to use the right tool for the data-digging job.

Cynthia Murrell, November 14, 2014

Sponsored by ArnoldIT.com, developer of Augmentext

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