5 Expert Predictions for the eDiscovery Industry in 2018

Recently D4 sat down with some of our internal experts and asked them to share their predictions for the eDiscovery industry in 2018. From advanced analytics to preparing for the upcoming GPDR changes, each expert had a unique viewpoint on where eDiscovery is headed in the upcoming year.

Here are some of their thoughts:

eDiscovery Predictions for 2018

1. Chuck Kellner – SVP & Senior Consultant, Discovery Engineer Group

“1. Artificial Intelligence Meets the Internet of Things (AI Meets IOT):  We will face eDiscovery challenges where devices are running intelligent algorithms to deliver results on which people place heavy reliance.  For example, new on the market are insertable earbuds the size of hearing aids that perform language translation real-time, using AI. Obviously, they will be used by tourists to get them through their travel difficulties. But they will be pressed into service by business people.  What happens when they don’t deliver, or when they deliver ambiguous results? Whose reliance on can generate what kinds of damages? Who will be responsible for them? As eDiscovery experts, will we identify responsive data from the customer’s business context, the device manufacturer and the translation algorithms?

2. Bio-eDiscovery: In 2013 I wrote a blog about the coming age of Bioediscovery. Biomechanical and electronically communicating implants abound as prostetheics and as aids to hearing, eyesight, heartbeat, and even cognitive skills.  These will challenge us in patent and products liability litigations as sources of ESI that move upstream from the devices themselves to the sources of electronic information that adjust and control them.

3. Pharmaceutical 3D Printing: Advances in pharmaceutical 3D printing have put medications on the market that are more finely tuned than the previously pressed pill or stuffed capsule. These medications are designed for minute adjustments in the mixing and release of compounds. Their manufacturers are already challenged by their IP concerns in patent filings, challenges and litigations. These products will start showing up in off-label marketing investigations and products liability cases as with almost every prescription drug ever released. They will challenge us as eDiscovery experts to identify the sources of ESI that manufacture them, including the ESI associated with 3D printing devices and programming.”

2. Amanda Bergeron – Consultant, Discovery Engineer Group

“In 2018, we should expect to see a significant rise in the use of Advanced Analytics and Technology Assisted Review as a standard practice for case teams.  Additionally, we should expect to see courts across the country further approve the use of this type of technology as a standard review practice.  Whether you’re a large or small firm, solo practitioner or corporation, 2018 should be a year filled with technology enhancing review tools.”

3. Rafe Stanley – Consultant, Discovery Engineer Group

“Corporations and law firms are quickly coming around to the value that eDiscovery professionals add to the process and recent trends show the legal field is becoming more and more reliant on their skills and work experience to make sure that litigation comes in on-time and under-budget. Over the past few years many legal professionals have worked diligently to expand their workflows to include best practices for digital discovery, but even dedicated in-house litigation support staff can feel overwhelmed when new or unknown workflows, documents types, or production standards start to arise. The specialized knowledge and experience base afforded to eDiscovery professionals like those at D4 is often forged in the fires of dozens of cases, allowing our experts to work through a variety of issues and draw on our institutional knowledge-base. By being a repository of knowledge and problems solvers for the law firms and corporations that may be just learning the in’s and out’s of eDiscovery, these professionals are allowing legal teams to tackle large cases wisely and efficiently and proving day-after-day that the benefits they confer are worth it.”

4. Parvez Ahmed – Consultant, Discovery Engineer Group

“1. High Tech companies with a lot of intellectual property to protect will move increasingly to multi-use litigation repositories to store productions of prior art and ESI discovery responses. The re-use of the attorney work product and application of litigation analytics will save each company millions in costs associated with recurring IP and patent litigations. (Slightly amended version of prediction that Chuck provided)

2. Expect shifts in information governance and data security and management in the financial sector as Obama era regulations are re-analyzed and potentially reduced.

3. The drastic rise of cloud based data storage will require companies to rethink current architecture as it relates to data archiving and retrieval.

4. As US based companies will continue and increase their presence in European and Asian/Pacific markets significant changes loom on the horizon. Europe’s General Data Privacy Regulation (GDPR) goes into effect in May 2018, which seeks to streamline guidelines governing personal data across the EU. Businesses must stay abreast of their obligations under the GDPR. Similar regulations are also being discussed in the Asian Pacific markets where personal data guidelines are relatively more laxed.”

5. Charles Roberts – Consultant, Discovery Engineer Group

“Machine Learning: Like message threading is now as automatic a choice as is de-duplication, machine learning will become commonplace for eDiscovery document reviews in 2018. General Counsel already understand the positive cost implications for using TAR for production reviews, and they will encourage their outside counsel to embrace the technology. Without the constraints of coding a control set, training rounds by subject matter experts, and multiple predictive models, litigation teams will find that they can dramatically reduce the review of non-responsive documents just by commencing review using continuous active learning.”

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