Situation: A large international financial services organization, with operations throughout Europe, needed to collect, review and produce relevant data to opposing counsel.
The matter sounded straightforward, but in fact had a number of unique challenges, including:
- Extremely large data volumes in disparate formats: In addition to a half-million documents, several TBs of data resided on nearly 10 years’ worth of old back-up drives, email archives and obsolete messaging systems.
- Data privacy laws: The organization had to be exceedingly careful to ensure compliance with multiple data privacy laws in multiple jurisdictions before disclosing the data to opposing counsel.
- Multilingual review: Documentation needing review originated in multiple offices and languages throughout Europe, requiring accredited native language review lawyers.
- Short timeframe: The financial services organization needed to deliver all discoverable information to opposing counsel within a six-month time window, ending in early 2015.
A straightforward, six-month project was in fact one of the most complex e-disclosure projects to date in Europe. To successfully complete this massive undertaking, the organization required a comprehensive legal e-disclosure solution that incorporated a mix of analytical software, consultation and skilled legal reviewers. Due to the importance of the matter, the variety of needs, and FTI Consulting’s expertise in handling complex matters, the firm was selected to assist the financial services organization.
Showcasing the breadth of offerings available to address a variety of e-disclosure challenges, FTI Consulting provided the following:
- Defensible forensic investigation (FTI’s Investigate offering): FTI’s forensic experts were based on site to safely and defensibly identify, preserve, collect and process relevant data in accordance with local data privacy laws.
- Advanced analytics and review software (FTI’s Ringtail software): Ringtail was installed behind the firewall so that the data could be safely hosted on-premises in Europe. The software’s early case assessment tools, Mines and Cubes, helped pinpoint the most relevant information in relation to the ongoing legal dispute. From there, Ringtail’s Document Mapper feature visually grouped documents into concept clusters in order to identify the most and least relevant sets of data.
- Expert managed review (FTI’s Acuity offering): Following Safe Harbor requirements, qualified reviewers remotely accessed Ringtail from an office in Canada. From there, they conducted a first- and second-level review exercise as well as an extensive redaction exercise.
FTI also provided additional e-disclosure consulting remotely from London to ensure the entire process was efficient and defensible given the data volumes, privacy concerns and timeframes.
Impact: A multi-terabyte project from collection through production completed within six months and at budget.
FTI successfully completed the data collection and processing, delivered the initial data assessment, established an on-site working data center, determined data relevance via data mining software, and provided supportive managed review within the client’s tight timeframe. At peak periods, FTI was able to dispatch as many as 40 reviewers in one day to effectively manage large volumes of data.
With hundreds of millions of dollars at stake in this legal dispute, the client has thus far been able to efficiently uncover the most relevant data using FTI’s resources and solutions. Despite the complexities of the case, FTI has delivered results on time and on budget, quickly and flexibly scaling its managed review services as needed at any given time.