Information Governance Challenges in the Life Sciences, and Financial Services Industries

While many of the high-level principles of Information Governance (IG) and the technologies supporting their implementation are almost universally applicable, each industry sector presents different challenges – one-size solution does not fit all. For example, unregulated privately held technology start-ups that are experiencing rapid growth may not have any retention / destruction policies in place; they will expand their IT storage until they crash into a big event, such as litigation, an IPO, or a merger. At that point they might require a top to bottom reconstruction – akin to an emergency room visit after a car crash. Other organizations already function within the constraints of a regulatory regime such as life sciences or financial services. Especially in publicly traded companies, regulated industries are further along the continuum in almost all of the metrics associated with IG principles such as: existence of a RIM program; adoption of a retention schedule; legal hold procedures; and protection of sensitive information. Unlike the emergency room metaphor above, the relative maturity of IG initiatives in these organizations requires more of a performance coach than an emergency room doctor to improve their well-being. Organizations also differ greatly in the need for dispersal of their information …

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Cloudy Laws – Cloud Computing Security and Legal Challenges

Cloud computing presents innumerable opportunities and brings with it enormous security and legal challenges. While there is no single accepted definition of the “cloud,” the National Institute of Standards and Technology created a reference model in 2011. NIST defined cloud computing by describing its five essential characteristics, three service models, and four deployment models. (NIST Special Publication 800-145) Cloud computing is a model for enabling convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications, and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction. Essential Characteristics Service Models Deployment Models On demand self service Broad network access Resource Pooling Rapid Elasticity Measured Service Software as a Service (SaaS) Platform as a Service (PaaS) Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) Private Cloud Community Cloud Public Cloud Hybrid Cloud The rapid increase in the availability of cloud computing solutions ranging from Enterprise systems, to Office 365, to the ad hoc use of unencrypted Dropbox accounts, has profound implications for privacy, information security, eDiscovery and legally defensible document retention policies. Hardly a day passes without news of another serious security breach or weakness. The security risks and the costs of misjudgments, mistakes or …

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LocationGate – Where in the World Was Waldo?

Just look at his iPhone data Apparently I am not the only person troubled by the 2011 revelation that Google and Apple collect location data from smart phones.  Mike Elgan wrote a thoughtful piece for Computerworld. Who owns your location? – Computerworld The idea of tracking files existing on phones and on the computers used to synch data raises eDiscovery issues as well as obvious privacy and data security concerns.  Will employers be tempted to look at the data collected by company issued phones to see if their sales team or delivery drivers were on task?  Employers defending discrimination cases are always on the lookout for employee misconduct that would justify termination of employment on non-discriminatory grounds.  Did she lie to the boss about that sick day as shown by the trip to the Foxwoods Casino? Warrantless Searches A January 2011 decision by the California Supreme Court held that police may make a warrantless search of a person’s cell phone incident to a lawful arrest – in California.  In the opinion, the court considers and dismisses the privacy argument: Regarding the quantitative analysis of defendant and the dissent, the salient point of the high court‟s decisions is that a “lawful custodial arrest …

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