Efficient Ediscovery for Gmail & Other Complex Collaboration Data

| September 13 2022

Organizations that use Gmail for business communications need a way to preserve and extract discoverable information in the event of litigation. The question is, how?

We’ve already discussed why Gmail is an important data source for modern ediscovery and why it can be difficult to preserve, collect, and review. There are two primary challenges:

  • organizations must simultaneously implement and monitor multiple legal holds across multiple complex data sources and  
  • individuals charged with managing legal holds and data collection efforts often need help from the IT department—which introduces workflow bottlenecks and unacceptable delays.

Today, in our third installment, we’re shining a light on how Hanzo solves those challenges.

How Hanzo Orchestrates Multiple Legal Holds With a Single Tool 

Hanzo enables ediscovery professionals to put custodians on hold across Gmail, Slack, and the broader Google Workspace environment in one simple, clear, easy-to-read dashboard view. This single view gives users full control over legal holds for some of the most challenging data sources in modern ediscovery.

Place a hold.

From the main Hanzo page, it’s quick and easy to create a matter, define its scope, and designate specific custodians to place on hold. If the data source allows it, Hanzo enables in-place preservation to minimize costly data collection while securing data against deletion or modification during the pendency of a legal hold.

Search across collected data results.

With Hanzo, users can see all holds for Gmail, Slack, and Google Workspace at once instead of switching between multiple platforms to access and manage different data sources. This makes it fast and easy to implement holds, review current holds, and release holds at the conclusion of a matter so that regular retention policies can be reinstated.

Empower cross-departmental access.

And because Hanzo is simple to use, any authorized staff member can control legal holds for these complex data sources without calling the IT department. Let’s turn to what makes Hanzo so intuitive and easy to use.

Hanzo Is Easy to Use, Decreasing the Burden on IT and Avoiding Workflow Bottlenecks

Hanzo orchestrates the hold and collection of custodians and data using  Google Vault to hold and, if necessary, collect Gmail data. This confers all of the advantages of Google Vault while circumventing the difficulty of using Vault directly. With Hanzo, a user needs only know what custodian and data source a matter concerns to effectuate a defensible legal hold or execute a data collection.

Additionally, because Hanzo works through Google Vault’s API rather than the Drive API, it allows Gmail data to be preserved at the point of creation. Preserving data within Google provides a best practice for data preservation, allowing users only to collect data when/if it is needed for litigation or discovery.  Hanzo also creates a full audit trail that shows who was on hold when and what data was collected, ensuring legal defensibility.

Collecting data from the Gmail account of a custodian subject to hold is a simple matter of clicking a few buttons. Users can restrict a collection's start and end date and then ask Hanzo to collect the account without navigating the Vault interface or acquiring additional permissions.

Hanzo automatically indexes collected Gmail data, so it is ready to search, with an easy-to-use Boolean search capability that includes the text of emails and a vast array of metadata. Hanzo also maintains email threading for ease of review.

Speaking of review, Hanzo exports data in a review-platform-ready format that can be directly loaded into Relativity and other common review platforms. This is a major advantage over using Vault directly, as Vault exports must be laboriously reprocessed before loading to a review platform.

Because Hanzo provides access to data that ediscovery teams often struggle to preserve and collect, and because it is so easy to use, it affords a major workflow advantage.

Ediscovery teams can: 

  • implement legal holds quickly, 
  • preserve data in place to avoid costly overcollection, and 
  • effectively manage collections—all without waiting for the assistance of their IT staff.


Hanzo: Solving the Ediscovery Challenges of Complex Data Sources

At Hanzo, we’ve spent over a decade anticipating and responding to the emerging challenges presented by the collaboration platforms that corporate legal teams rely on. We’ve seen how the ever-increasing variety of discoverable data sources impedes workflows for ediscovery teams.

That’s why we’re designing easy-to-use tools to help ediscovery teams to be able to:

  •  effortlessly implement, review, manage, and release legal holds;
  • search, cull, and collect data; and 
  • transfer data collections to review platforms like Relativity— 
  • across multiple complex data sources—
  • all without calling the IT department for access or assistance. 


Get the Full Story

Check out our guide, A Better Way to Manage Gmail Data for Discovery, to learn more.



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