The third annual Conference on Preservation Excellence (PREX14) was held September 10-11 in Portland, Oregon. Attended by over 140 participants, the 2014 conference again drew praise by focusing on the importance of constructing a defensible data preservation practice and cultivating a culture of compliance in organizations. The goal for PREX each year is to bring together practitioners and industry experts in the field of data preservation and litigation holds to explore emerging trends and establish best practices, aspiring for excellence when preparing for and responding to a preservation obligation.

The outstanding line-up of speakers included many of the top minds in ediscovery, including Hon. Ron Hedges, Michael Arkfeld, Craig Ball, Ariana Tadler, David Cohen, Maura Grossman, Jeane Thomas, Robert Owen and many others.  This year’s conference shared the insights of federal court judges, including: U.S. Magistrate Judges Hon. Paul Grewal (N.D.Cal.), Hon. Frank Maas (S.D.N.Y.), Hon. David Waxse (D. Kan.), Hon. Craig Shaffer (D. Col.) and the 11th Judicial Circuit Judge of Florida, Miami Hon. Gisela Cardonne Ely.

This two-day conference focuses exclusively on data preservation and legal hold best practices. First-day sessions this year covered all aspects from building a defensible legal hold plan, to cultivating a culture of compliance. The afternoon also included topics on the impact of proposed Federal Rules amendments, using preservation as a strategic advantage, and international considerations. Topping off the first day’s sessions was a new addition to PREX, the Preservation Innovation Showcase in-house legal professionals shared best practices that are having a measurable impact on their organizations by automating their preservation processes.

On the second day, the agenda shifted to exploring implications of how emerging technologies disrupt the way we create, retain, and interact with data including the trend of recording everything, the challenges presented with BYOD and social media. The conference then concluded with an in-depth “view from the bench” by our esteemed judicial panel.

Attendees came away with a wealth of practical tips and guidelines for improving their organization’s ability to respond to preservation obligations. A key theme that was discussed is the requirement of cooperation and competency when dealing with electronically stored information. Experts encouraged organizations to invest in training and policies to help ensure employees fully understand the law and the implications new technology. Ultimately, a sound process, carefully documented and reliably executed will reduce cost, mitigate risk and demonstrate good faith in meeting legal standards and protect the company.

Zapproved is working on a thorough recap of the discussions at the 2014 Conference on Preservation Excellence. Until that is published, please enjoy PREX14 photo album sharing highlights from the event.
















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