How Are DLP and eDiscovery Related?

The protection and management of sensitive data has never been more crucial. Digital loss prevention (DLP) and ...

The protection and management of sensitive data has never been more crucial. Digital loss prevention (DLP) and electronic discovery (eDiscovery) play an especially vital role in maintaining data security and compliance. The convergence of DLP and eDiscovery has transformed data management for the better, helping businesses work safer and smarter.

Here’s what to know about the relationship between these processes.


How Do DLP and eDiscovery Work?

DLP and eDiscovery is truly a match made in heaven. But before delving into their unique relationship, it’s important to understand how they work separately.


This strategy aims to detect and prevent unauthorized access/transmission of sensitive information. DLP solutions are often integrated into wider data protection plans. Their primary goal is to prevent private data from leaving the corporate network without explicit permission.

Think about all the personal data businesses work with on a daily basis: ID numbers, credit card details, and intellectual property, to start. Without a solid DLP strategy, this data becomes vulnerable and can fall into the wrong hands.

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eDiscovery is the process by which organizations collect and handle digital data related to a lawsuit or investigation. It starts with the identification of data sources and includes preservation and collection. eDiscovery allows businesses to store information in a legally compliant manner and prevent tampering and loss. 

Then, the relevant parties review the data to determine relevance and privilege. It is then presented in a legal context. This process is key to handling the compliance side of data management.


What is the Relationship Between DLP and eDiscovery?

So how are the two connected? How do DLP and eDiscovery work together? These processes have several connected use cases.

Data Identification and Collection

This pairing can also be used to support data identification and collection. DLP systems categorize and tag data based on its sensitivity and relevance to compliance standards. For example, it can mark documents required for litigation proceedings.

Then, when an eDiscovery request pops up, the system can quickly locate and provide access to these pre-identified and categorized documents. Needless to say, this makes the eDiscovery process much faster.  

Consider, too, a scenario where you’re dealing with a particularly large volume of data. Rather than having to search for the right documents by hand, you can search by DLP classifications. That way, you can be sure you’re collecting items that are actually useful.

Preservation and Hold Management

eDiscovery and DLP also work together to preserve data. Once relevant data has been identified, it must be preserved in a way that prevents alteration or deletion. DLP systems make this possible by automatically enforcing preservation policies on relevant data. Basically, it’s like placing a legal hold on it.

This ability is especially crucial early on, when you aren’t yet sure of the full scope of the inquiry. DLP systems retain all necessary data without requiring manual input from you, thus maintaining data integrity and complying with legal standards.

Improved Security During eDiscovery

While eDiscovery in itself is a highly secure process, DLP can make things even safer. During the eDiscovery process, there is a slight—but not nonexistent—chance of sensitive data exposure to unauthorized parties.

DLP tools help mitigate this risk by enforcing security policies that control who can access that data during eDiscovery. So how does this work in practice? One example is the way DLP can restrict access to those authorized to view that data for legal review.

These tools also provide an audit trail to demonstrate compliance with data protection regulations. If your data handling practices are ever questioned in court, you’ll be glad to have that information at hand.

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eDiscovery and DLP Integration Examples

The use cases of DLP and eDiscovery are extensive. Here are some specific examples of where and how this integration can be useful—and how it may benefit your business.

Intellectual Property Disputes

Imagine a company facing litigation over intellectual property (IP) rights. It goes without saying that they need to secure relevant data, and fast. DLP systems can be programmed to tag documents containing proprietary formulas.

The eDiscovery process can then prioritize these tagged documents. In doing so, it ensures the company can effectively defend its rights without losing data or opening the door to unauthorized users.

Data Breach Litigation

Data breaches can be catastrophic, and they can be a particular problem during migrations. For many businesses, it’s a question of when, not if a breach will happen. DLP systems play an invaluable role in identifying how, when, and where the breach occurred, tracking the movement of sensitive data.

During subsequent eDiscovery requests, organizations can use DLP reports to quickly provide evidence of compromised data and how they responded. More importantly, they can show the steps being taken to prevent future incidents.

Employment Issues

DLP and eDiscovery can aid in wrongful termination and discrimination cases. Suppose your company faces a wrongful termination lawsuit from a former employee who claims (dishonestly) that he was terminated based on discriminatory factors. By integrating eDiscovery and DLP systems, you can pull critical data like:

  • Emails between the employee and his supervisors.
  • Performance reviews and performance documentation.
  • Communication around the termination decision.
  • HR policies and any complaints involving the employee.

This data creates a clear trail of who accessed the employee’s performance reviews and when. It basically proves that documents were not tampered with post-termination. Your company can then proceed with a solid defense based on demonstrable data.


We Can Help With Your DLP and eDiscovery Processes

Managing DLP and eDiscovery is challenging for any company. If you’re in the middle of a cloud migration, keeping up with these processes can be particularly difficult. With so much to consider, it’s no wonder many companies struggle to maintain security and compliance throughout the process.

But you don’t have to leave things to chance. With a trusted partner by your side, you can proceed with confidence, assured that your data is being handled according to best practices.  

Cloudficient helps businesses like yours transition safely. To learn more about how Cloudficient can help with your legacy archive data migration, contact us today.

With unmatched next generation migration technology, Cloudficient is revolutionizing the way businesses retire legacy systems and transform their organization into the cloud. Our business constantly remains focused on client needs and creating product offerings that match them. We provide affordable services that are scalable, fast and seamless.

If you would like to learn more about how to bring Cloudficiency to your migration project, visit our website, or contact us.

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