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What challenges does Office 365 eDiscovery create?

Office 365 provides a diverse array of collaboration and content management tools -- but that could also complicate eDiscovery.

The challenges of Office 365 eDiscovery manifest differently based on the product you're using within that suite...

of services. When we talk about Office 365 it's not just one product.

Microsoft Sway is one example. It's a brand new way of telling a story -- the new PowerPoint for the 21st century. That's all well and good, except it has a very different modality for sharing information, very little in the way of controls when it comes to sharing that information and probably not a great deal of control for compliance

It's important to pay attention to the products your employees are using. Your organization should carefully control how those products are being introduced to your employee population and ensure that the products have a minimum level of compliance capability built-in.

Another common Office 365 eDiscovery challenge is locating conversations in social media, and enterprise social in particular. When you look at Office 365, conversations can happen inside of SharePoint and Yammer. For eDiscovery purposes, conversations can also be comments embedded within a Word document stored in SharePoint or Yammer, or held in OneDrive. Skype for Business has a whole conversational element as well.

When faced with an eDiscovery scenario, it can be difficult for organizations to go out and find all of the content, because there are so many different places where it could be stored, and not necessarily all stored in the right way. In certain cases, the nomenclature is going to be different enough that not even search tools are going to be able to find everything you're looking for.

Before embarking on an eDiscovery product implementation, companies should keep in mind that Microsoft has addressed some Office 365 eDiscovery concerns, but not universally across the suite of services.

Next Steps

Making sense of the many Office 365 services

EDiscovery improvements bring ROI to information governance

Is SharePoint eDiscovery a fit for your company?

This was last published in February 2016

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