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SharePoint, other industry trends affecting traditional email, study shows

by | Sep 19, 2011

Microsoft SharePoint allows organizations to collaborate like never before, and the software, along with other industry developments, is affecting traditional email in eDiscovery requests.

According to a recent study of 2,000 legal and IT employees, 67 percent said files and documents are the No. 1 most commonly requested data for eDiscovery, compared to 58 percent who cited email.

“With the wide variety of sources in play, including loose documents, structured data, SharePoint content and even social media, it is not enough for legal and IT to simply focus upon email alone,” said Symantec eDiscovery counsel Dean Gonsowski. “It’s critical for the two departments to work together to develop and implement an effective information retention policy.”

Of those surveyed, 51 percent indicated that information must be produced from SharePoint files, followed by 44 percent who said instant and text messages and 41 percent cited social media.

Last month, the IT staffing firm Robert Half Technology released findings of a poll of more than 1,400 chief information officers. The firm found that 54 percent said real-time communication tools, including SharePoint, will surpass traditional email in the next five years.