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Configure a legal hold

Applies to:
  • Code42 CrashPlan (previously CrashPlan PROe)

Overview

This tutorial explains how to create, configure, and monitor legal holds using the Legal Hold web app. For details about how to collect data from a legal hold, see Collect files from a legal hold.
Note: You must have an on-premises master server to use the Legal Hold web app. 

Legal hold is a part of the eDiscovery process undertaken in response to actual or prospective litigation. For information on how to leverage the Code42 platform for eDiscovery, see our eDiscovery integration guide.

Considerations

  • Placing a user (called a custodian) on legal hold creates a new backup set on devices that belong to that user. Placing a user on legal hold changes their backup selection, so they might notice more files and folders selected for backup. The backup set associated with a legal hold is not visible to the end user, but the files backed up by the legal hold are available for user restores.
  • All devices for a user on a legal hold will back up to all destinations available to the user, even destinations that are not selected for backup. As a result, the user may notice an increase in bandwidth usage or delays in the progress of non-legal hold backup sets.
  • A user on a legal hold cannot be deactivated from the Code42 administration console or via LDAP sync. If you need to prevent users from accessing the Code42 environment when they are on a legal hold, we recommend blocking users. Blocking a user prevents the user from accessing the Code42 environment while CrashPlan continues to back up and preserve their data.
  • If you are adding more than 100 custodians to a legal hold, Code42 recommends using Code42 server version 5.4 or later. Version 5.4 includes performance improvements for larger legal holds.
Potential data loss when moving users
If a user on a legal hold is moved to an organization that offers different destinations, any legal hold archives on destinations not offered by the new organization will go into cold storage. The legal hold backup set starts over with a new archive on the new destination. As a result, previously backed up files, version history, and deleted files will be lost.
Special considerations for how file exclusions apply to preservation policies

Before you begin

  • The steps in this tutorial require one of the following roles:
    • Legal Admin (preferred role)
    • SYSADMIN
    • A custom role with appropriate permissions. Users with the legalhold permission are able to view all legal holds.
      Copy the Legal Admin role to create an appropriate role.
  • Consult with your legal team before configuring a legal hold. The settings and configuration choices should align with the needs of your legal and compliance teams.
    • As another example, if the standard backup policy is to purge deleted files after a period of time, you may decide to keep deleted files forever for a legal hold.
    • For example, you may decide to include the device's entire main drive, in order to back up files outside the user's home directory.

Step 1: Create legal hold

  1. Sign in to the Code42 administration console on your master server.
  2. From the app switcher in the upper right, choose Legal Hold.
    Legal Hold
  3. Click the create hold icon (+) from All Legal Holds.
  4. Enter the legal hold's name in the Create Legal Hold dialog.
    The new legal hold is created and appears in the list of legal holds.

Step 2: Configure general backup schedule

Default general backup schedule is recommended
The default general backup settings are usually optimal for legal holds. Backups run continually by default. Other settings may cause backups to take longer to complete.

To choose the legal hold's backup schedule:

  1. From the list of all legal holds, click the name of the legal hold.
  2. In the General Backup section, click Edit.
  3. Set backups to run always or between specified times.
  4. Change the schedule for file verification scans if necessary.
  5. Click Save after updating the settings.

Step 3: Configure file selection

Critical setting
The legal hold file selection is a critical setting. Consult with your legal and compliance teams to decide on the optimal settings. If you do not modify this setting, only the file selection of the custodian's organization (or root org), and the custodian's customized file selections (if allowed) will be backed up.
  1. In the File Selection section, click Edit.
  2. Under Included files, click Select file path.
    Choose substitution variables corresponding to the folders and files you wish to include.
  3. (Optional) Under Excluded files, click Select file path.
    Choose substitution variables corresponding to the folders and files you wish to exclude.
  4. Click Save after updating the settings.

Step 4: Configure filename exclusions (optional)

Adding exclusions reduces data collection
By default, no files are excluded from the preservation policy's backup set. However, file exclusions added under the Global Exclusions setting in the administration console also apply to all preservation policies.
 
Learn more about best practices for file exclusions and legal hold
  1. In the Filename Exclusions section, click Edit.
  2. Enter the file extension or regular expression to exclude. A regular expression allows you to search for particular patterns of text. Talk to your system administrator if you require help creating regular expressions.
    • Choose the regular expression option to enter a regular expression rather than a file extension.
    • Alternatively, you can import filename exclusions:
      1. Click Import.
        The Import dialog appears.
      2. Insert the filename exclusions from a text file into the dialog.
  3. Choose the operating system that the exclusion applies to.
  4. Click Add.
  5. Repeat steps 1 - 4 for each file exclusion or regular expression.
  6. Click Save after you have added all filename exclusions.

Step 5: Configure frequency and versions

Defining the retention policy
The frequency and version settings are a critical setting for any legal hold. Consult with your legal and compliance teams to determine the best retention policy for data that is placed on legal hold.
  1. In the Frequency and Versions section, click Edit.
  2. Set the frequency at which versions are saved.
  3. Change the version retention sliders to the desired values:
    • Last week: Indicates which versions to keep from last week (not including today).
    • Last 90 days: Indicates which versions to keep from last 90 days (not including last week).
    • Last year: Indicates which versions to keep from last year (not including the last 90 days).
    • Previous years: Indicates which versions to keep from previous years (not including last year).
    • Remove deleted files: Period after which deleted files are removed from the archive.
      Update your default legal hold settings
      When you create a new legal hold, the Remove deleted files setting indicates that it is set to Never. However, if you do not change the default frequency and version settings, the legal hold immediately removes deleted files from the backup archive, which can result in data loss.

      To correctly apply the Remove deleted files setting to the legal hold, edit any setting under the frequency and versions section, and click Save

      This is a known issue in version 5.x legal holds that keep the default settings. This does not apply to legal holds where the settings have been changed from the default. This issue is resolved in version 5.3.2, 5.4.4, and 6.0.4. We recommend upgrading to fix the issue in any existing legal holds and prevent this issue in new legal holds. Contact Code42 CrashPlan support for help. 
  4. Click Save.

Step 6: Configure advanced settings (optional)

Defaults recommended
We recommend that you do not change the advanced settings for a legal hold.
  1. In the Advanced Settings section, click Edit.
  2. Change the advanced settings to the desired values:
    • Data De-duplication: Controls data de-duplication rate.
    • Compression: Controls how CrashPlan compresses your backup.
    • Encryption enabled: Indicates whether encryption is turned on.
    • Watch file system in real-time: Indicates whether CrashPlan is constantly monitoring for file changes.
    • Back up open files: Indicates whether files that are open (in use) at the time of back up will be backed up.
  3. Click Save.

Step 7: External references (optional)

External references allow you to set fields that are searchable using the Code42 API LegalHold resource, and allow you to reference external sources of information or databases, such as case files, spreadsheets, legal documents, or eDiscovery tools.

  1. In the External Reference section, click Edit.
  2. Enter text in the external reference field.
  3. Enter text in the notes field.
  4. Click Save.

Step 8: Add custodians

  1. Click the Custodians tab.
  2. Click the Add custodians (+) icon.
    The Add Custodians dialog appears.
  3. Start entering the username of the user you want to add.
    Matching usernames display as possible choices.
  4. Select the user you want to add.
  5. (Optional) Add additional users if necessary.
    Add Custodians
  6. Click Add to save your selection.
    The selected custodians appear in the list of custodians on the Custodians page.

Step 9: Test your legal hold

We recommend you use a test device to verify that the legal hold is collecting data as expected. 

Updates to the legal hold
When you are testing, you may want to see how updating the legal hold affects the files that are collected and retained. The CrashPlan app applies updates from the legal hold only after a file verification scan. So to see the changes, you must first start a file verification scan. Go to the Device Details in the {{console}, and select Scan folders. 

Deactivate and reactivate custodians

Deactivate a custodian

Deactivating a legal hold custodian removes the legal hold backup set for the user.

Data loss risk
Deactivating a legal hold custodian may lead to data loss. Files and folders included in the backup set of a deactivated legal hold custodian that are not part of another backup set will be permanently deleted at the next archive maintenance. To avoid data loss, do not deactivate a custodian until you are absolutely sure that the custodian's legal hold data will not be required in the future.
  1. Sign in to the administration console on your master server.
  2. From the app switcher in the upper right, choose Legal Hold.
  3. Select the legal hold that includes the custodian.
  4. Select Custodians.
  5. In the list of custodians, hover over the custodian you want to deactivate.
    The deactivate icon appears at the end of the row.
    Deactivate
  6. Click the Deactivate icon.
  7. The Deactivate legal hold custodian message opens. (Code42 server version 5.3 and later only).
    Deactivate legal hold custodian message
  8. Click Yes, Deactivate to deactivate the custodian.
    The custodian is deactivated.

Reactivate a custodian

Reactivating a custodian does not recover data
Reactivating a custodian does not recover data loss caused by deactivating the custodian. If archive maintenance has already purged the legal hold backup set, then the selected files and folders need to be backed up again.
  1. Sign in to the administration console on your master server.
  2. From the app switcher in the upper right, choose Legal Hold.
  3. Select the legal hold that includes the custodian.
  4. Select Custodians.
  5. From Choose status on the right, select Inactive.
  6. In the list of custodians, hover over the custodian you want to deactivate.
    The reactivate icon appears at the end of the row.
    Reactivate
  7. Click the Reactivate icon.
    The custodian is reactivated.

Deactivate and reactivate legal holds

Deactivate a legal hold

Data loss risk
Deactivating a legal hold may lead to data loss. Files and folders included in the backup set of a deactivated legal hold that are not part of another backup set will be permanently deleted at the next archive maintenance. To avoid data loss, do not deactivate a legal hold until you are absolutely sure that the legal hold data will not be required in the future.
  1. Sign in to the administration console on your master server.
  2. From the app switcher in the upper right, choose Legal Hold.
  3. In the list of all legal holds, hover over the legal hold you want to deactivate.
    The deactivate icon appears at the end of the row.
    Deactivate
  4. Click the Deactivate icon.
  5. The Deactivate legal hold message opens. (Code42 server version 5.3 and later only)
    Deactivate legal hold message
  6. Click Yes, Deactivate to deactivate the legal hold.
    The legal hold is deactivated.

Reactivate a legal hold

Reactivating a legal hold does not recover data
Reactivating a legal hold does not recover data loss caused by deactivating a legal hold. If archive maintenance has already purged the archives, then the selected files and folders need to be backed up again.
  1. Sign in to the administration console on your master server.
  2. From the app switcher in the upper right, choose Legal Hold.
  3. Click the Choose status dropdown menu and select Inactive.
    A list of inactive legal holds displays.
  4. Click the legal hold you want to activate.
  5. From the action menu, select Reactivate hold.

    The legal hold is activated.

External resources