The Special Case of Email<br />John Gregory and Dan MichalukJanuary 24, 2011<br />
Outline<br />Let’s deal with the following four challenges<br />Managing email<br />Locating email<br />Accessing email<br...
But First… What’s an Email Nowadays?<br />Stored, text-based communications today<br />SMTP communications – “classic emai...
Managing Email (The Litigator’s View)<br />This is a problem for corporations<br />Retention policies are key<br />Email s...
Locating Email<br />…on the corporate network in an investigation <br />Pre-confrontation<br />Email server <br />Lotus Do...
Locating Email<br />…outside the corporate network<br />Individual controlled<br />Personal e-mail accounts<br />Home comp...
Accessing Email<br />On the corporate network<br />Law has recognized a virtually unfettered right of employer access<br /...
Accessing Email<br />Recent cases<br />Quon – 2010, Supreme Court of the United States<br />R. v. Cole – 2009, Ontario Sup...
Accessing Email<br />Employee communicates with counsel on employer systems<br />A practical problem for employer counsel ...
Proving Email<br />Email problem #1 – You didn’t send that<br />Employee alleges termination on basis of pregnancy<br />Em...
Proving Email<br />Email problem #2 – I didn’t send that<br />Agreement to arbitrate executed through intranet<br />Execut...
Proving Email<br />Cloud based communications are harder to authenticate<br />Authenticate (go to ISP and not ASP)<br />Fi...
Resources<br />www.stephenmason.eu<br />John’s webpage (linked through Slaw)<br />www.allaboutinformation.ca<br />George L...
The Special Case of Email<br />John Gregory and Dan MichalukJanuary 24, 2011<br />
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Electronic Evidence - The Special Case of Email

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Transcript of "Electronic Evidence - The Special Case of Email"

  1. 1. The Special Case of Email<br />John Gregory and Dan MichalukJanuary 24, 2011<br />
  2. 2. Outline<br />Let’s deal with the following four challenges<br />Managing email<br />Locating email<br />Accessing email<br />Proving email<br />
  3. 3. But First… What’s an Email Nowadays?<br />Stored, text-based communications today<br />SMTP communications – “classic email”<br />Computer generated faxes<br />Webmail, Webmail via social networking application<br />Multi User Domains<br />Text messages<br />VOIP communications<br />
  4. 4. Managing Email (The Litigator’s View)<br />This is a problem for corporations<br />Retention policies are key<br />Email servers not ordinarily a business records repository<br />Email can be on a “short list” for retention<br />Pressure to move it off server, sometimes auto-delete <br />Limit: likely be relevant to reasonably anticipated litigation<br />This can be a discovery or trial issue<br />Remmington (1998) – Common law duty to preserve?<br />Broccoli v. Echostar (2005) – 21-day retention of e-mails<br />
  5. 5. Locating Email<br />…on the corporate network in an investigation <br />Pre-confrontation<br />Email server <br />Lotus Domino, MS Exchange, GroupWise<br />Mobile messaging server<br />BES<br />Network “clients”<br />Post-confrontation<br />Mobile Devices<br />Application-based communications<br />Company owned peripheral storage devices<br />
  6. 6. Locating Email<br />…outside the corporate network<br />Individual controlled<br />Personal e-mail accounts<br />Home computers<br />Third-party controlled<br />Telecommunications providers<br />Application providers<br />Alex Cameron’s presentation covered access to these sources<br />
  7. 7. Accessing Email<br />On the corporate network<br />Law has recognized a virtually unfettered right of employer access<br />Basis – ownership of system plus notification<br />Likely to see a greater balancing of interests<br />Corporations should consider<br />Routine monitoring based on special grounds<br />Periodic audits with controls<br />Investigations based on reasonable suspicion<br />
  8. 8. Accessing Email<br />Recent cases<br />Quon – 2010, Supreme Court of the United States<br />R. v. Cole – 2009, Ontario Superior Court of Justice<br />France v. Tfaily – 2010, Ontario Court of Appeal<br />City of Ottawa – 2010, Divisional Court<br />
  9. 9. Accessing Email<br />Employee communicates with counsel on employer systems<br />A practical problem for employer counsel among others<br />Key Canadian cases<br />Daniel Potter – 2005, Nova Scotia Supreme Court<br />Eisses v. CPL – 2009, Ontario Superior Court of Justice<br />Counsel’s obligations are clear<br />But the ultimate right of access is a matter of fact<br />Is it better to attack basis for privilege than argue waiver?<br />
  10. 10. Proving Email<br />Email problem #1 – You didn’t send that<br />Employee alleges termination on basis of pregnancy<br />Email pre-dates her pregnancy by two months showing bona fide intent to terminate<br />Employee says the e-mail is fabricated<br />How would you prove the email?<br />
  11. 11. Proving Email<br />Email problem #2 – I didn’t send that<br />Agreement to arbitrate executed through intranet<br />Execution by entering employee ID number plus password then clicking through<br />Supervisors can reset passwords<br />Supervisor resets password to help employee get access<br />Email confirmation sent to employee<br />Employee claims supervisor executed agreement and denies reading confirmation email<br />How would you prove the email?<br />
  12. 12. Proving Email<br />Cloud based communications are harder to authenticate<br />Authenticate (go to ISP and not ASP)<br />Figure out and prove the “system” whose reliability one would like to count on (or at least appreciate)<br />No standardization – every application works differently<br />Consumer oriented – so less rigorous than business systems<br />Proprietary – so code etc. are not readily available<br />Surrounded by TP apps – Tweetdeck, thousands of FB suppliers, who, where and what are they?<br />Are cloud providers in the ordinary course of business, i.e. should they be considered reliable?<br />
  13. 13. Resources<br />www.stephenmason.eu<br />John’s webpage (linked through Slaw)<br />www.allaboutinformation.ca<br />George L. Paul, Foundations of Digital Evidence<br />Charles Morgan, E-Mail Law<br />
  14. 14. The Special Case of Email<br />John Gregory and Dan MichalukJanuary 24, 2011<br />
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