Inside E-Discovery & Beyond: Reimagining Digital Risk

Big Data – the catchall term to describe the explosive growth of digital information – continues to get bigger in every way.  As data transforms every aspect of our lives, from the way we communicate with one another to the way we do business, the role and responsibilities of in-house legal professionals are transforming too. E-discovery is just the tip of the iceberg. Corporate counsel must contend with multiple—and often competing—demands on data use from different internal and external stakeholders. As a result, corporate counsel’s responsibilities as legal guardians are expanding to take on new areas of digital risk, and their roles are evolving to more actively participate in strategic business decisions.

Download BDO’s fourth annual Inside E-Discovery & Beyond survey which examines the opinions and insights of more than 100 senior in-house counsel about changes in their approaches to e-discovery, information governance, compliance, and cybersecurity. 

Some highlights from our latest survey are below:

  • All About Information Governance: Information governance is foundational to e-discovery directly impacting the cost, speed, and soundness of decision-making.  Not surprisingly according to this year’s survey, 46 percent of senior counsel plan to increase their information governance spend in the next 12 months.

  • Managing E-Discovery: The Early Bird Gets the Worm: For the second year in a row, survey respondents ranked managing information and data before a need arises as the most important factor in managing e-discovery litigation, followed by understanding potentially responsive data early in the case (23 percent) and reducing e-discovery cost (18 percent).

  • Digital Compliance Challenges: Nowhere is the digital compliance challenge more evident than in the uncertainty surrounding the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which will require companies controlling or processing EU citizens’ personal data to follow key requirements when it goes into effect on May 25, 2018.  Our survey found nearly half (48 percent) of senior in-house counsel are aware their organization is required to comply with GDPR.

  • Legal Officers’ Cyber Responsibilities Expand: Finally, it is impossible to ignore the elephant in the room: cybersecurity.  The future of crime, financial and otherwise, is digital and the corporate rulebook will change along with it.  Last year, BDO found that 74 percent of corporate counsel ranked a data breach as their organization’s top data-related legal risk.