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Email Archiving Blog

Compliance, eDiscovery and Email Management

Regulations Here, There, and Everywhere

The number of message-archiving regulations (some 5,000 now estimated in the U.S. alone) requiring retention and rapid availability of these “e-records” has been growing steadily. This places a heavy burden of compliance on literally hundreds of thousands of firms and organizations,  many of whom remain dangerously unprepared. Media reports have been rampant about the cost burdens of legal “e-discovery,” as well as the stiff fines and penalties for noncompliance to these regulations.

These regulations even apply to the White House. Two private groups sued the Executive Office of the President during the George W. Bush administration for “failing to properly archive millions of White House email messages between March 2003 and October 2005” (http://fcw.com/articles/2010/01/19/web-white-house-email-system-details.aspx).

The very strict regulatory requirements of the SEC, NYSE, and NASD for retaining electronic communications in the financial industry are considered to be the gold standard. These requirements are now regarded as best practices in other industries as well: in particular, relating to the archiving of all electronic messages onto unalterable media. SEC-regulated firms must maintain a secure, non-alterable, and searchable archive of all such messages; the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 requires that companies maintain all documents —including electronic documents— for as long as seven years.

But many firms have not yet been able to comply with regulations for email retention, due to the complexity and high cost of previous archiving solutions. Designed for large enterprises, they require specialized IT expertise, and go well beyond many IT budgets for small to mid-sized organizations. “Small businesses shoulder significant costs in order to comply with the maze of government regulation that impacts commerce,” write Robert C. Bird and Elizabeth Brown in the U. of Pennsylvania Journal of Business Law (Vol. 13:4).

The Email Archiving Solution powered by Intradyn solves this problem by providing the elegant, scalable method for storing and searching your organization’s “haystack” of email messages.

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