16 November, 2006

"ctrl s" no longer suffices : the mind boggles

As one who falls clearly into the half of the universe that sees electronic information as a blessing despite the responsibilities that come with the turf, I've read some interesting articles in recent days relating to developing legal requirements in the corporate field :

Corporate communication : why we can't just 'send and receive' anymore?, on the Bizcommunity website (South Africa. 13 November 2006)
"Email has to be well-managed in order for a business to achieve optimum levels of digital communication. However, another, arguably more pertinent reason for this discipline, is the current focus on the archiving of data and access to electronic records. Corporate South Africa is being directed, through legislation and industry-led awareness campaigns, to ensure that they tow the line as far as the way information is archived, accessed and reproduced" ;

The rise of electronic evidence - CNet News website (US. 8 November 2006)
"If you want to succeed in litigation these days, it is imperative that relevant electronic data be preserved. The destruction of such data can lead to serious adverse evidentiary inferences, as illuminated by a very recent case . . . A federal magistrate in Michigan recently was called upon in the case to decide whether and to what extent sanctions should be awarded with respect to the failure to preserve certain electronic evidence" ;

The legal danger lurking in the server on the Economist Intelligence Unit's website (US. 10 November 2006)
"In three weeks’ time, new rules come into force in US federal courts that could profoundly affect how companies treat electronic information, from e-mail and voice-mail to iPods and flash drives. The rules cover “electronic discovery” – the art of producing the right electronic documents to respond to a lawsuit . . . One of the most controversial and confusing aspects of the new rules relate to preservation of electronic information : can companies re-cycle the tapes they use to back up information on corporate servers, or do they need to keep all the back-up tapes in case they are ordered to produce them in court? And at what point do they need to start saving information : when they get sued or as soon as they think they might get sued? There is no hard-and-fast answer, but companies are worried".


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