MetaLINCS Software Enables ‘Quick Look' Investigations As Recommended by New FTC Guidelines

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E-Discovery Analysis Technology identifies key data to guide more efficient second request reviews.

MetaLINCS, a Silicon Valley-based software firm helping the legal industry collect and analyze email and electronic documents, today announced that its software speeds second requests as recommended by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in its new merger and acquisition guidelines. In its recent reforms ( http://www.ftc.gov/os/2006/02/mergerreviewprocess.pdf ) , the FTC suggests that a ‘quick look' approach is often the best way to expedite second requests. MetaLINCS enables corporations to process and produce documents more quickly to facilitate faster, more productive, and more cooperative merger reviews.

“The volume of documents typically associated with second requests is often overwhelming to both the general counsel and the FTC,” said Michael Clark, principal of electronic discovery research firm EDDix LLC. ”Advanced analysis technology can enable corporations to proactively guide the FTC to relevant information by conducting thorough, quick examinations of electronic data at the earliest stages of the merger review process, which can narrow a request's focus, proving mutually beneficial for federal investigators and corporate counsel in terms of time, effort, and cost.”

Under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 (HSR Act), agencies have the time and ability to challenge mergers prior to consummation—beyond the standard 30-day waiting period—when additional information is needed to perform sufficient antitrust review. However, as the nature of documents and information has changed, corporations are increasingly burdened in responding to these second requests, and agency staff faces greater challenges in reviewing and analyzing resulting documents.

The new FTC announcement, Reforms to the Merger Review Process , outlines several reforms mandated by the staggering increase in discoverable electronic content—email, word processing documents, spreadsheets, PowerPoint presentations, etc. Corporations currently have only two months to work with the FTC to produce all documents relevant to each specific second request. These tight time constraints make it difficult for the FTC and corporations to work together to determine exactly what information should be requested. MetaLINCS eDiscovery software can give legal teams control over a process that is rapidly becoming unmanageable. C ounsel can con duct an initial assessment of materials at the outset of the review process and then work closely with the FTC to recommend and negotiate what information should be requested.

“Some level of analysis can—and should—be conducted at every step of the electronic discovery process,” states a recent white paper by George Socha of Socha Consulting. “Efforts at analysis ought to begin with the earliest attempts to identify sources of potentially relevant information…Early assessment of data can cut costs, improve results and speed up the overall process.” A free copy of the white paper is available at http://www.metalincs.com .

The new rules issued by the FTC also urged attorneys to avoid de-duplication technologies that may conceal or discard valuable information. MetaLINCS software preserves all the metadata associated with discarded duplicate data while still effectively minimizing the quantity of documents that need to be reviewed. In addition, unique MetaLINCS reporting capabilities enable corporate counsel to produce instant, FTC-ready indexes of privileged documents.

About MetaLINCS E-Discovery Application

The MetaLINCS E-Discovery Application offers corporate attorneys, investigators and litigators a comprehensive E-Discovery review and analysis software application, which can be used by a corporation, law firm or E-Discovery service provider. The application combines a patent-pending guided discovery process with a unique visual representation of the relationships between people, events, time, documents and communication patterns. This approach allows users to quickly gain an understanding of electronic information in context, which leads to more successful investigations, mitigates compliance risks, and reduces discovery and litigation costs.

About MetaLINCS

MetaLINCS is a leading provider of Electronic Discovery software. The company's flagship product, the MetaLINCS E-Discovery application, drives early and accurate case assessments by guiding users through the discovery process and suggesting new areas for analysis. Corporate attorneys, investigators and litigators are able to make better decisions earlier, boost discovery productivity, and ensure discovery consistency across cases. The MetaLINCS E-Discovery application is the first commercial software to visualize relationships between people, events, time, documents and communication patterns. Founded in 2003, MetaLINCS is a privately held company located in Mountain View , California and has received venture financing from ArrowPath Venture Capital, Newbury Ventures and Rembrandt Venture Partners. For more information about the company, visit http://www.metalincs.com .

MetaLINCS is a registered trademark of MetaLINCS. Any other marks used in this document are trademarks or registered trademarks of the manufacturers or marketers of the products with which the marks are associated.

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Holly Berkley
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