In order to analyze the reasons that Lehman Brothers failed in September 2008, Jenner & Block mined the company's electronically stored information (ESI) containing an estimated three petabytes of data--roughly of 350 billion pages of documents--for relevant issues. That's 150 times more than all the information in the Library of Congress.
The Electronic Discovery Institute, a non-profit research organization, completed a study of ESI that had been reviewed manually in response to a Department of Justice investigation of Verizon's acquisition of MCI. The cost of the initial review was more than $13 million, about $8.50 per document. A sample of 5,000 documents from the original collection was reviewed twice by computer and also by two human review teams--Teams A and B.
Foster Gibbons, director of document review services at Integreon, a legal outsourcing firm that conducts linear privilege and responsiveness reviews, agrees that computer-aided reviews can result in "jaw-dropping reduction in volume and more efficient workflow," but emphasizes the value of lawyers prioritizing issues and safeguarding privileged documents.