Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Electronic Discovery (E-Discovery) Services In India

Electronic discovery (e-discovery) is a process whereby the electronically stored information (ESI) is acquired and exchanged in an electronic format so that the adjudicating authority can analyse and adjudicate on the basis of such information.

The stages and process of e-discovery involves collection, preparation, review and distribution of electronic documents associated with private investigations, governmental actions or legal proceedings. These documents include emails, files, memos, documents, spreadsheets, images, presentations etc.

When the facts and evidence based upon e-discovery are required to be proved in a court of law, e-discovery process in itself is not enough. In such cases, a more detailed and legally admissible cyber forensics process is required.

A number of professionals are involved in e-discovery. This includes forensic investigators, lawyers and IT managers, first responders, etc. Each may have his own role and understanding of the issue. However, to be admissible in court, recovered evidence must satisfy the requirements of cyber forensics.

Cyber forensics is a more detailed and domain specific exercise that must be undertaken by experts only. Cyber forensics is typically techno legal in nature whereas e-discovery may be just technical. So cyber forensics is different from e-discovery.

In e-discovery process relevant data and information is identified and placed on legal hold by the lawyers. Evidence is then extracted and analysed using cyber forensic procedures, and is usually converted into PDF or TIFF form for use in court.

E-discovery related issues are of tremendous importance for both litigation and non litigation related matters. Business houses and even banks must have e-discovery and due diligence mechanisms at their places. Further, e-discover is also an essential prerequisite for successful litigation and dispute resolution.

The scope of e-discovery in India is going to increase and e-discovery skills development in India is urgently required in this regard. Cyber skills developments in India need to be ensured so that we have enough number of skilled and knowledgeable e-discovery professionals in India. Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PLTB) is providing techno legal trainings for chief information officers (CIOs) in India who are primarily responsible for managing e-discovery issues. The career scope of such CIOs is great in India as Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has made appointment of CIOs mandatory for all banks in India.

Further, e-discovery outsourcing, LPO and KPO services in India are going to increase in near future. PTLB is also the exclusive techno legal e-discovery related litigation, LPO and KPO services provider of India and world wide. Perry4Law and PTLB are also managing the exclusive techno legal Digital Evidencing and E-Discovery Centre of India. It is taking care of innovative digital evidence LPO and KPO and other techno legal digital evidencing and e-discovery related issues. We hope these initiatives of PTLB would be beneficial for all stakeholders.