E-Discovery Requirements Are About to Hit Canadian Firms

As Canadian firms brace for new e-discovery rules, they can look to their U.S. counterparts for technology lessons.

By Anne Rawland Gabriel

Time is growing short for Canadian securities firms to prepare for the scheduled April enforcement of the new Canadian National Instrument 31-103 (NI 31-103), regulation that significantly expands record keeping requirements for electronic communications. Fortunately NI 31-103 substantively mirrors U.S. regulations already in place, which means Canadian firms have the opportunity to learn from others’ experiences.

“NI 31-103 is very similar to SEC and FINRA requirements in the U.S.,” substantiates Carolyn DiCenzo, a Gartner research VP. “It’s important to remember that the spirit of the law is communications and not just one particular type of communication, such as e-mail or instant messaging.”

For more see wallstreetandtech.com.

Nine Web sites IT pros should master in 2009 — Keeping up with the latest Internet innovations

By Carolyn Duffy Marsan, Network World

Here’s a time-saver for IT executives swamped by last-minute budget cuts and end-of-the-year performance reviews: We’ve written your 2009 goals for you, with our list of nine Web sites you need to study during the next 12 months.

This list is not for geeks. It’s for IT professionals of a certain age, who don’t spend every waking hour online but need to keep up with the latest innovations on the Internet.

Master these Web sites, and you’ll prove you can innovate during the most trying economic times. And you’ll do it more efficiently than your 20-something employees, who waste too much time chasing the new, new thing on the Internet that may not survive the downturn.

1. LinkedIn
Forget Facebook. In the last six months, LinkedIn has become the de rigueur Web 2.0 site for IT professionals. LinkedIn has 30 million members, almost double what it had a year ago. And it raised more than $75 million in venture capital during 2008, so it has staying power. It has a host of new features that make it the most productive networking site on the Web. Spend some time updating your LinkedIn profile and reaching out to current and former colleagues. You can show your boss that you’re well connected, and you’ll be ready in case you’re on the next layoff list. In 2008, LinkedIn made our list of the 20 most useful social networking sites on the Web.

2. Google Apps for Business
Call it what you like — software as a service or cloud computing — but it’s the future of enterprise IT departments, and you need to get on board with it. You’ll be under more pressure than ever in 2009 to find cheaper ways to deliver IT services. One way to do that is to pilot a Google Apps project, such as document sharing via GoogleDocs or video sharing via Google Video. Your staff can build one of these collaboration projects in a jiffy, and the information will be available to employees from any location on any computer. Among Google Apps proponents: The District of Columbia government.

3. VMware Communities
Chances are you’ve already embarked on a server virtualization project, and continued consolidation of your servers is a key money-saving goal for 2009. Most of you are using VMware for your server virtualization projects, and our product reviewers recommend you stick with VMware over Microsoft’s Hyper-V for the foreseeable future. To get the best real-world feedback on how best to deploy VMware, keep your eyes on the VMware Communities Web site. It’s got user groups in your community and lots of tips from other VMware developers that can help you solve problems faster.

4. Secunia
Security will continue to be a top priority for 2009, but you’ll need to figure out how to do it on the cheap. That’s where Secunia.com comes in. This site aggregates security vulnerability information from leading vendors, providing you with one-stop shopping for the latest news about security bugs and the software patches available to fix them. The site has an active community of IT security folks who can help you fix operating systems and applications before you get attacked. Secunia made our list of 20 useful IT security Web sites in 2008.

For more see networkworld.com.

10 tips to preserve data for the long haul — A better model for preserving data is needed and it requires worldwide collaboration, according to a task force on digital preservation and access

The growth of digital data is threatening to spiral out of control. More than 452 exabytes of information have been created and replicated this year — an amount higher than the world’s available storage capacity , according to IDC.

Not all data should be preserved, but efforts to save important information are being stymied by many factors: complacency, fear that the problem of long-term digital access and preservation is too big to take on, inadequate funding, confusion, and lack of alignment among stakeholders, a new report says. A better model for preserving data is needed, and it requires worldwide collaboration, says the Blue Ribbon Task Force on Sustainable Digital Preservation and Access, which consists of experts from universities, major libraries, and one tech company ( Microsoft ).

“The long-term accessibility and use of valuable digital materials requires digital preservation activities that are economically sustainable — in other words, provisioned with sufficient funding and other resources on an ongoing basis to achieve their long-term goals,” task force co-chairman Brian Lavoie of the Online Computer Library Center said in a press release.

Although the task force says an industrywide solution is needed, there obviously are many steps individual IT shops can take to implement a better data preservation plan. The task force’s second co-chair, Fran Berman, director of the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) at the University of California, offered a list of 10 tips for preserving data in a recent article.

For a look at Berman’s advice, see infoworld.com.

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Desperate IT workers who have been laid off will go rogue in 2009, selling corporate data and using crimeware, reports have predicted

The credit crunch will drive some IT workers to use their skills to steal credit-card data using phishing attacks, and abuse their privileged corporate computer access to sell off valuable financial and intellectual information, forensic experts have warned.

Both PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and security vendor Finjan are forecasting that the recession will fuel a significant rise in insider fraud and cybercrime in 2009.

A PwC forensic expert claimed the financial-services sector is already investigating a rising number of staff frauds, while Finjan cited evidence of a trend in 2008 for unemployed IT staff in Eastern Europe and Asia to use crimeware toolkits to launch phishing attacks and seed malware to steal financial details.

For more see Zdnet.com.

Technology Predictions for 2009

By The CMS Watch Analyst Team

It’s that time of year again. The CMS Watch analyst team ponders what to expect next year, and offers 12 predictions that we think will shape content technologies in 2009.

Clearly, the economic downturn will have a substantial impact on buyers and vendors alike, and economic concerns underpin several of our predictions. But we also foresee some organic developments (new SharePoint version, social tagging) and ripening technology (mobile analytics, application search) having at least as much impact.

For more see CMSwatch.com.

Lexakos Acquires Information Technology Staffing Group to Complement Growing Legal Business Consulting Practice

Corporations Focused on Mitigating Information Management Risk Have Struggled to Harmonize the Legal, Compliance, IT and Operational Components of Effective Compliance; Lexakos Consulting Stabilizes These Cross-Functional Challenges Through Specialized Technology Staffing Solutions on a Temporary and Permanent Basis

NEW YORK, NY–(MARKET WIRE)–Dec 2, 2008 — Organizations seeking to reduce risk, contain costs and improve productivity received a boost today when legal business consulting firm Lexakos announced the acquisition of key assets from premier information technology staffing firm, The Wilson Group, and the launch of a new business unit called Lexakos Consulting and Staffing Services Group.”Organizations continue to be burdened with complex information management and global compliance issues, and need better strategies to protect critical assets, but resources for handling these specialized areas are hard to find. In acquiring The Wilson Group, we added a proprietary database with over 40,000 technologists and a recruiting team poised to address the pressing needs of our clients,” says Lexakos Founder, Rick Wolf. “We know how to identify individuals who understand how legal, compliance and IT interrelate, and stand ready to recruit professionals with these overlapping skill sets.”

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Unified communications bring e-discovery headache

To its advocates, unified communications is considered the answer to a number of business communication issues. The integration of all communications, including voice and data, over the Internet is gaining wider adoption as organizations pursue it for cost savings, businesses process transformation, enhanced collaboration, and even “green” benefits.

In business, IP telephony has reached about 25 percent of the global market, and many organizations are considering wider deployment, according to Technology Futures, Inc. However, an e-discovery concern that still is somewhat under the radar could slow adoption as companies learn that the move away from traditional phone service includes the conversion of voice mails into e-mail in the form of wave (audio) files.

In the event of litigation, they are discoverable in either case, but in electronic form these audio files must be converted to text, and the enabling voice-recognition technologies, while improving, may or may not meet varying court standards for accuracy. Due to technological limitations, it’s not an easy issue to address, but the growing complexity of e-discovery has left most companies unprepared and vulnerable in terms of e-storage.

For more see WTNews.com.