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Don’t Forget to Register for our Post-LTNY Webinar

Reminder: Join Us for a Live Discussion on Wednesday, February 8th AT 1PM EDT

Register Now!

In our first webinar of 2017, IGI leaders will host a discussion with subject matter experts from IGI Charter Supporter OpenText

UPDATE: Our experts will also share most important IG and E-Discovery trends and developments they just saw and heard at the LegalTech conference in New York, Jan. 30-Feb. 1, 2017.

We will discuss:

  • New delivery models for e-discovery capabilities that support a comprehensive approach to IG.
  • Evaluating the relationship between ECM and e-discovery as we mature and build our IG programs.
  • Perspectives on what IG and e-discovery will look like in the near future.

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Discussion Participants


Bennett B. Borden Headshot

Bennett B. Borden

Chief Data Scientist and Chair, IG and eDiscovery Group, Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP; Founder and Chair, IGI

Bennett B. Borden  is a globally recognized authority on the legal, technological and policy implications of information. As Chief Data Scientist at DBR, Bennett is responsible for the firm’s data analytics strategy. He is founder and Chair of the Information Governance Initiative.

Barclay T Blair Headshot

Barclay T. Blair

Founder and Executive Director, IGI

Barclay T. Blair is an advisor to Fortune 500 companies, software and hardware vendors, and government institutions, and is an author, speaker, and internationally recognized authority on information governance. He is the Founder and Executive Director of the Information Governance Initiative.


Hal Marcus

eDiscovery Attorney and Product Marketing Executive, OpenText

Hal Marcus works with the innovative team at Recommind, an OpenText company, to transform discovery through analytics. A graduate of the University of Michigan Law School, Hal practiced as an intellectual property and antitrust litigator at an Am Law 100 Wall Street firm before embarking on a career in technology that now spans 20 years.

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Webinar Background

We predict that 2017 will be a landmark year, with our research showing an accelerating number of organizations transitioning from talking IG to doing IG. While early adopters have now moved past foundational and risk-focused IG activities, the much larger middle segment has to date spent most of their time writing policies, establishing steering committees, and evaluating their technology options. This vast middle segment is beginning to shift into execution mode, implementing their IG frameworks into their technology environment, appointing IG directors and other IG leaders, and tackling their first big IG projects.

Nowhere will this be more obvious than at the intersection of e-discovery and IG. Like enterprise IT itself, e-discovery is experiencing massive disruption as heavily litigated organizations evaluate the right mix of service providers, cloud infrastructure, and internal technology horsepower and expertise. Traditional e-discovery approaches like “pay by the GB” that were based on service bureau models are less relevant in a reality where e-discovery is managed on a continuum as just one of many IG activities. This evolution creates new challenges, but also creates exciting opportunities for IG leaders to leverage the same tools, policies, and governance structures across their IG activities, instead of inefficiently managing e-discovery as an exception with its own set of rules and technologies.

In 2016, OpenText—best known as a leading provider of Enterprise Information Management (EIM) software—acquired Recommind, a pioneer in the application of advanced analytics to find, review, and produce information in high-stakes e-discovery. The acquisition is an example of an IG provider “putting its money where its mouth is” in betting on a vision of truly integrated IG.

Join us on our first webinar of 2017, which will be a discussion between the leaders of IG and experts from OpenText following LTNY. This webinar will provide a valuable opportunity for the IG community to hear directly from OpenText about why they made the Recommind acquisition, what it means for customers of both organizations, and what it means for their vision of e-discovery and IG.

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Digital Preservation Benchmark

IGI’s New Industry Benchmark Exposes the Grave Threat to Information Over the Long Term

Our new Benchmark reveals that most organizations cannot ensure protection and access for critical long-term digital information despite accelerating legal and business requirements. It also calls for immediate action and provides insight and guidance to help organizations achieve compliance.

Our research reveals that the majority of organizations do not have a coherent long-term strategy for their vital digital information even though virtually all of them (98%) are required to keep information for ten years or longer. Further, while 97% of information professionals understand the need for a specialized approach to these assets, only 11% are storing them in systems specifically designed to ensure long-term protection and access. This gap has societal, economic, and legal implications.

Our research, supported by Preservica, provides a new benchmark for organizations to evaluate their capability and outlines tactics for closing this critical gap. It also reports on how leading organizations like Associated Press, HSBC, and the State of Texas have addressed this challenge.

The Governance of Long-Term Digital Information: IGI 2016 Benchmark also reveals that IG professionals charged with addressing this problem are highly aware (97%) of the unique challenge of opening, using, and relying upon digital files over the long-term. Namely, that accelerating innovation and technology refresh rates mean that software and hardware can be obsolete, making the information unusable, long before an organization’s legal need or business requirement to keep and use that information expires.

However, most organizations appear to lack a coherent strategy to solve this problem. An alarming majority of organizations (68%), for example, rely on shared network drives to store these assets, a technology that offers no inherent capabilities to protect or ensure access over the long-term.

“Every day it becomes easier and cheaper to store digital information,” said Barclay T. Blair, executive director and founder of IGI. “But every day we also see an intensification of global legal and business obligations to protect and provide long-term access to these critical assets. Our Benchmark shows that virtually every organization large and small across industry verticals faces this problem, but awareness of how to solve it is low. This concerns us.”

Preservica’s support has enabled the IGI to make the full Benchmark available for immediate download at no cost.

There are two ways to get the Benchmark:

1.       Download from Preservica.

2.       Existing IGI Community Members can find it in the Community here.

Also, we are holding an online event with Preservica to discuss the key findings of the Benchmark on June 8th at 11am EST, 4pm UK. Register today.


Introducing Quantified Information Governance

Cover of IGI Quantified Information Governance Special Report

“We are living with the consequences of a generation of attempts to force analog practices to work in a digital world. It has failed.”

Barclay T. Blair, Quantified Information Governance Special Report

Our lives are increasingly quantified by data. The demand for devices that track and analyze the data we generate just by living have given rise to the “quantified self.” Analysts predict that by 2020, the market for fitness wearables will grow to $10B USD, with over 100M people using the devices to enable data-driven decisions about health, sleep, exercise, and other critical aspects of their lives.

The promise of data-driven decision making is this: processing and analyzing data at a scale far exceeding the capabilities of the human brain will transform our ability to understand and predict reality. The IGI believes that the ability to govern information in a way that enables these deeper insights, unforeseen efficiencies, and new business models will separate the winners from the losers in this new era.

But we still have a long way to go. While we invest in technology that can beat a human at Jeopardy® in one part of our organization, we are stuck with the technology that prints Trebek’s cue cards in another. For all the big data sexiness, “up to 80% of the total development cost of an analytics project” is spent on “data discovery and wrangling . . . the most tedious and time-consuming aspects of an analysis.

Most organizations don’t know what data they have, where that data lives, what the data means, what rules apply to the data, and whether or not the data represents measurable value or risk. Consequently, our data is messy, incomplete, difficult to find and access, duplicative, and missing context essential to enable its analysis and use. In short, we are living with the consequences of a generation of attempts to force analog practices to work in a digital world. It has failed.

In fact, most organizations make management decisions about their information based on tradition, superstition, and supposition instead of innovation, evidence, and analysis.It's time that our approach to governing our information caught up to the information age. It's time for a new idea.
We believe that this new idea is Quantified Information Governance.

We have captured our thesis, vision, and guidance on Quantified IG in a new Special Report written by Barclay T. Blair, Executive Director of the IGI. Quantified Information Governance: A New Path to Value from Data, our first piece in what will be an expanding focus for us, was published with the support of Guidance Software.

Quantified Information Governance: The application of smart technology and evidence-based practices to the governance of information. It ensures that we have essential facts about our information and our operating environment so we can make evidence-based decisions.

Click here now to receive your complimentary copy of our new Special Report from IGI Supporter Guidance Software.

Existing IGI Community members can also login and download it here.

Sign up here to join the IGI Community to access our extensive library of IG research and tools including our Annual Report, whitepapers, case studies, infographics, and more. You can also use the Community to connect with your peers and discuss your IG issues with them.

INformation Governance Initiative Digital Preservation strategy

Does Your Organization Have a Digital Preservation Strategy?

Learn Why You May Need One in IGI’s Interview with Preservica’s Mike Quinn

Learn Why You May Need One in IGI’s Interview with Preservica’s Mike Quinn

Whether you work in the public or private sector, if your organization is like most, you probably have digital records and information that you need to - or want to - keep for long periods of time. If that information is important enough for you to keep, you will want to be able to access it in the future.

However, hardware and software obsolescence may be putting your digital records and information at risk. Unfortunately, many organizations are not taking sufficient steps to ensure that this information will be findable, useable, or trustworthy into the future.

The IGI is interested in learning how practitioners are addressing these issues. We need your help in answering a quick, 5-minute survey, the results of which you can use to help benchmark your organization. All data you provide through this survey will be reported anonymously. The results will be made available through a report in May 2016.

Thank you in advance for your help.

Recently, the IGI caught up with Mike Quinn, Commercial Director at Preservica, one of our newest Supporters, to find out more about what organizations can do to better protect their valuable digital assets to ensure that it is both preserved and accessible in the future.

About Preservica

We asked Mike to tell us a bit about Preservica and what the company offers. “Preservica is a digital preservation specialist that has been at the forefront of software technology, research, and consulting in this emerging field since the late 1990s. Our active preservation solutions are used by leading businesses, archives, libraries, museums, and government organizations, globally, to safeguard and share valuable digital content, collections, and electronic records for decades to come,” he said. He went on to explain that the software is available in both on-premise or cloud format, is standards-based (OAIS ISO 14721), and is able to be integrated with leading Enterprise Content and Records Management Systems.

Long-Term May Be Shorter Than You Think

You may be wondering whether your organization even has digital assets that are at risk. We asked Mike to explain what constitutes “long-term” in the digital world and why it matters.

“Some portion of your digital records and information is likely to have enduring value to your organization, either for business value, or legal, regulatory, or compliance reasons. Some of it may even be considered of permanent value to your organization. This could include things such as annual reports,policy documents, intellectual property, and even the digitized history of the organization (e.g. videos, photos, emails, audio, and websites),” he said.

Clearly, the latter type of records and information—ones we need or want to keep permanently—are “long-term.” But hardware and software obsolescence may be putting other records and information at risk even if you aren’t keeping it forever.

Mike went on to explain, “Long-term can be thought of as 10 plus years. Many institutions undergo IT system refresh cycles at this frequency, and technology obsolescence can happen surprisingly quickly. Think of floppy disks, for example. Now, think of all of the other types of technology—software and hardware—that your company is no longer using or no longer supports.”

Obsolescence can happen even sooner depending on the technology involved. So, if your organization is keeping digital records and information longer than 10 years, it is time to think about putting in place a process to properly preserve them.

Archiving Versus Preservation: What’s the Difference?

So your organization is saving certain types of information. There are archiving features in some applications, for example. Or you may be saving in a back-up, ECM, EDRM, EIA, or other system. We asked Mike to explain the difference between archiving and preservation.

“Archiving is concerned with storing the ‘bits’ (ones and zeros) of digital records. Many archiving solutions will even include some form of durability, such as robust storage in case the bits get damaged over time. However, as technology refresh cycles accelerate, most of these archiving solutions are missing one critical focal point. You might be able to get all the ‘ones and zeros’ back in the future, but because file formats and software are moving at such an unprecedented pace, you probably won't be able to read the information using the software and devices of the future,” he said.

He went on to explain how preservation is different.

“Digital preservation goes beyond ‘bit level’ durability. For some digital records, it’s important that they are findable, readable, usable, and trustworthy long into the future. Digital preservation is an active process of ensuring that digital records are ‘future-proofed.’ Metadata is used to make sure that it is easily findable; fixity values ensure its authenticity; and active migration to new formats ensures that a digital record can be usable way into the future – even though the originating technology (file format, software,hardware, etc.) may now be obsolete,” Mike explained.

Is Converting to a Common Format Like PDF, TXT, CSV or Analog Option Like Paper or Film Enough?

Some organizations are attempting to address long-term preservation by converting to common file formats like PDF, TXT, or CSV or analog options like paper or film. When we asked Mike about these approaches he said they may be acceptable—at least for now—in some instances. However, he explained these strategies are often problematic, too.

“If you think about high quality digital images or complex, interactive digital content such as spreadsheets, email, and websites, conversion to a common format may not be feasible. Such conversions can lead to degradation of fidelity to the original, or significant loss in terms of functionality. A PDF of a photo isn’t the same quality, for example. A PDF rendering of a spreadsheet isn’t able to be manipulated like the spreadsheet could be. The same applies to conversion to analog options like paper or film. As digital content becomes more complex, multi-media and interactive, converting to a simpler, common format is not always an option. Further, in addition to these concerns, questions of provenance and authenticity remain. How do I know that the conversion process did not lose some important information?”

He also noted that even today’s common file types could be obsolete tomorrow. “Then there’s the issue of the long-term viability of any particular format and version level, itself. Remember, we may be talking about decades for some digital records. Committing to a single, common format that far into the future isa risk in itself. The ‘convert-once and forget it’ approach may not be the best option for vital digital records” Mike adds.

Where Does Long-term Preservation Fit into the Information Governance Lifecycle?

At what point in the information governance lifecycle should decisions about long-term preservation be considered? Mike explained that because of rapid technology refresh times, taking steps to preserve digital information should not be thought of as an “end of life” decision because by then, it may be too late. He argues that digital preservation can be thought of as a “best practice discipline for digital records of enduring value to the institution” and should be part of the process from the beginning.

“If a digital record is created with the knowledge that it is likely to have a long-term (10 years+) or permanent retention policy, the way digital preservation fits into the information governance lifecycle is this: If it’s vital to your institution, don’t just archive it. Make sure you future-proof it with digital preservation,” he explained.

He also noted that the individual parts that make up an entire record need to be taken into account.

“A digital record may originate and reside operationally in an ECM, RM, file share, or other operational system. That entire digital record may be quite complex – for example, an email with attachments. A good information governance policy will require all those components of an entire digital record to out live the life cycle of the IT systems they were created on,” Mike asserts.

Are Organizations Aware of the Challenges of Managing Long-Term Digital Records and Information?

Some industry sectors may be more aware of the issue of digital preservation than others. Education,Mike suggests, is the key to bridging the gap.

“Preservica has worked with the cultural heritage sector for many years. These ‘Memory Institutions’ understand the challenges of managing long-term records. That’s why many National and State Archives have very active digital preservation programs. Many forward-thinking corporations also understand the value of protecting their long-term history, and an increasing number now have digital preservation programs too. However, many organizations think that archiving and storing digital content is good enough, and there is generally a sense that this is not a business problem,” he said.

“Funnily enough, if you ask these people the same questions about digital content of personal value, you’ll usually get an answer along the lines of: ‘Oh yes, I’ve got some family photos, videos, etc. sitting on a disk, USB, or an old computer running MSDOS. I have no idea what’s on there and how I can read it!’ So no, I think there’s still a lot of education to be done to help organizations understand the specific challenges of managing long-term business records,” added Mike.

To help bridge the gap, Preservica has been involved in various education programs, workshops, and webinars in association with organizations such as the Archives and Records Association (ARA), the Information Records Management Society (IRMS), and the Council of State Archivists (CoSA). In addition, Preservica is supporting research with the IGI to better understand the level of awareness of these issues in the information governance community.

The Public Sector Faces Some Unique Challenges

We asked Mike to tell us more about the unique challenges faced by public sector entities in long-term digital preservation. He noted that public sector records usually face the additional challenges of legally mandated retention periods and accessibility rules. “This means that digital records might have a very precise long-term preservation requirement (e.g. 25 years, 100 years, or permanent) and a time at which those records may be opened to researchers and/or the public,” he explained.

The sheer volume of records that some public entities receive is another issue. Public sector archivists receive information from other government entities and are tasked with the preservation of large amounts of information.

“There’s also the challenge that many public sector archives are on the ‘receiving-end’ of records, for which they must take long-term responsibility. So the ability to take content simply, at scale, and in an automated fashion from a variety of ECM, RM, and Email systems is very important. That’s why having an open standards based, integrated and comprehensive digital preservation platform is important to public sector organizations,” he explained.

Research Initiative on the Preservation of Long-Term Digital Records and Information

In conjunction with joining the IGI, Preservica is supporting research into how organizations handle their long-term digital records and information. Please take a few minutes from your day to help us benchmark this important issue by taking our short survey. This one is quick, we promise!

IGI Supporter Actiance Executive Briefing Series

Executive Briefing Roadshow: Information Governance for Employee Communications

The IGI is taking to the road with an Executive Briefing series hosted by our newest Supporter, Actiance. The series will focus on the various communication channels used by employees. It is no longer a world where email is the primary tool of choice. Actiance can attest to it as they hear it quite often. What are some of the stories they are hearing?

  • A major Financial Services firm is now allowing broker-dealers to communicate with prospects via LinkedIn—but they are prohibited to use InMail.
  • A medical device manufacturer now uses Skype for Business exclusively for internal communications in order to improve productivity.
  • An energy company uses SharePoint as a repository for communications related to energy trades—and must address specific FERC supervisory guidelines.
  • A regional bank allows federated communications with partners via IBM Sametime – but must restrict access to authorized individuals

What is common across all of these examples is that each new communication channel that is deployed touches a workflow or business process that can contain sensitive or high value content. The 2nd common denominator is that each example potentially collides with an existing regulation or internal business records class that entails a specific set of requirements for policy enforcement, storage, and accessibility for potential inquiry down the road. And for each, the specific regulatory guideline is consistent—that the content itself is deterministic, not the channel or tool that carries that communication. So, the rules that govern the use of email apply equally to unified communications, instant messaging, public social media, and voice. FINRA 3110 applies across the board. PHI is PHI where ever it may reside. 3, 5, or 7-year retention polices are driven by business value and potential risk, and not different if the communication happens to be restricted to 140 characters.

The implications of this massive shift don’t stop with regulations and governance. In fact, its impact has just begun to be felt in civil litigation, where the past 18 months have seen a significant increase in the court cases where the headline centered on the use (or mis-use) of non-email. The failure to preserve text messages. Or a Facebook post from a nurse of a patient in the operating room. Or a stockbroker who was sued for promoting a stock that her family had a controlling interest in. And, given new FRCP rules implemented in December that elevate the notion of taking “reasonable” steps to preserve ESI in the face of litigation, this frequency is only bound to increase.

So, how can organizations regain control over the ways that their employees are communicating? How can they address the uniqueness of Twitter, Skype for Business, Chatter, LinkedIn, and Jabber in their collection and preservation processes for eDiscovery? How can they extend the existing information governance discipline that applies to files, documents and emails to Tweets, Likes, and Shares?

To help tackle this topic, IGI executive team members Jason R. Baron and Barclay T. Blair will join Actiance at the upcoming Executive Briefing series. View the list of cities and dates below and register to join us.

  • April 5, 2016  in Dallas, TX
  • April 14, 2016 in Boston, MA
  • April 19, 2016 in Chicago, IL
  • May 17, 2016 in Minneapolis, MN
  • June 2, 2016 in Charlotte, NC
  • June 29, 2016 in Atlanta, GA
Preservica IGI Supporter Survey Preservation

Preservica Joins the IGI and Supports New IG Research

We are pleased to announce that Preservica has just joined the Information Governance Initiative as a Supporter. The IGI’s work is supported by leading providers of IG products and services who join us in our mission to promote the adoption of information governance as the best practice for protecting and monetizing data.

Preservica provides digital preservation software that helps its clients from around the world to ensure that their vital long-term and permanent digital records remain findable, useable and trustworthy into the future.

Research Initiative on the Preservation of Long-Term Digital Records and Information

In conjunction with joining the IGI, Preservica is supporting research into how organizations handle their long-term digital records and information. Please take a few minutes from your day to help us benchmark this important issue, by taking our short survey. This one is quick, we promise!

“I am delighted that Preservica has joined as a supporter of the IGI. An increasingly important facet of information governance is the ability of institutions to provide for long-term preservation of records and information of all kinds, in trustworthy formats. This is true both in the public and private sectors where soon there will be millions of records in electronic form, appraised as long-term and permanent under existing records schedules, all of which must be preserved and made accessible. I look forward to Preservica’s important contributions to the IGI,” shared Jason R. Baron, Co-Chair at the IGI.

"The importance of digital preservation is rapidly rising up the information governance agenda" says Jon Tilbury, CEO at Preservica. "We look forward to working with the IGI community to share and discuss the challenges of ensuring long-term and permanent digital records remain usable and accessible into the future."

A report summarizing the research results will be published in May and available for download through the IGI Community site. Please take the survey, today.