There are all sorts of reasons why an eDiscovery task grows in size, sometimes substantially, between inception and completion. The issues can change; the number of relevant custodians may increase; unexpected difficulties arise thanks to corrupt or encrypted files; or the client may simply have overlooked to mention some of its sources.
The need to manage overseas discovery is often the biggest single factor which makes a task very much bigger than it would have been if conducted solely in its home jurisdiction. Language differences pose difficulties, practical matters of logistics arise and, not least, foreign laws are encountered which restrict the collection of certain classes of data.
If this is true of cross-border discovery in Europe, it is even more so in the Asia-Pacific region. The word “region” conceals a wide range of jurisdictional variations – a mixture of legal, practical, language and cultural differences – which can quickly turn an apparently simple task into a large and complex one.
An article by Rob Hellewell of Xerox Litigation Services and Michelle Mattei of Eisai, Inc. addresses these issues. Called Behind the Great Firewall of eDiscovery in Asia, it surveys the differing restrictions across the principal countries of the region.
It also identifies some US court decisions which result from the conflict between the eDiscovery requirements of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and various data protection, privacy, state secrets, banking and health data restrictions. It ends with some practical suggestions for dealing with these issues.
When Xerox Litigation Services is instructed on a matter like this, the tool of choice is its behind-the-firewall application Viewpoint. Viewpoint is able to scale up from a laptop in a backpack to multiple servers, making it an appropriate tool for eDiscovery tasks which have the potential to grow significantly.
I expect to hear more about the use of viewpoint in AsiaPac shortly.