When it comes to storing and archiving data, companies typically opt for off-site storage or use ‘the cloud.’
With off-site storage, like Perpetual Storage, the client saves data to a storage medium like a flash drive or magnetic tape, and Perpetual Storage couriers transport it to the secure, remote storage facility.
If companies use the cloud, their data is transported through the Internet to file storage usually in an unknown physical location. The data remains online, available and searchable given proper access information.
There are legal considerations when determining which approach is best for your organization.
For example, there is a compelling argument, based on the 2010 lawsuit Johnson v. Neiman, as to why off-site storage is of greater advantage to an organization than cloud storage.
In the Johnson v. Neiman case, the defendants sought an order not to produce e-mail messages located on back-up tapes on the basis that the electronically stored information was not reasonably accessible.
The court agreed. It concluded that “reasonably accessible” is best defined as whether the electronically stored information is kept in an accessible or inaccessible format.
Basically the court said if your data is backed-up on the cloud, that information is accessible. But if it’s off-site, archived and stored in a long-term storage facility, not available online, the information is basically inaccessible.
So, when you determine a back-up or long-term storage solution for your organization, keep in mind that storing data in the cloud means it remains accessible and searchable by discovery teams.
Reference: Bow Tie Law — Arguing Back-Up Tapes Are Not Reasonably Accessible