The Civil Discovery Impact of 50,000+ Smart Phone Extractions

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Good find by Doug (who credits his wife) on’s new report on the widespread use of Mobile Device Forensic Toolkits like Cellebrite or Access Data by law enforcement. Aside from the civil liberties issues, I want to draw corporate litsupport/compliance/security attention to the logical progression that looms. The latest Gallup poll shows that 58% of employees work remote sometimes or always. I can tell you from personal experience and data collections that smart phone usage for work tasks rises dramatically with remote workers. What happens when an employee refuses to unlock or turn over their BYOD smart phone during a custodial or exit interview? Will the court accept that gap in your productions when your BYOD policy states that the company should have the right to access the device? I can see an opposing argument that law enforcement’s warrantless roadside extraction of texts and other mobile content raises the bar for corporate BYOD management. Already, I have run RFP’s for corporate litsupport to buy their own MDFT’s from Paraben or others. I am still looking for a practical COTS enterprise solution for remote preservation/acquisition of mobile devices. The manual effort to set up device backups to OneDrive or similar work arounds is a real pain point that someone needs to solve. So send me any recommendations or new offerings!

Written by Greg Buckles

Independent consultant focused on eDiscovery and IG solutions.

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