FTI Technology Crafts Solution to Remedy Health Care System’s Data Ills
Blue Cross Blue Shield North Carolina (BCBSNC)
Situation: Understand corporate data residing on various networks and Sharepoint sites to proactively reduce data footprint and reduce future risk and exposure.
The Information Governance team at Blue Cross Blue Shield North Carolina (BCBSNC) sought to provide greater visibility into corporate data stored on its various networks, as well as on the numerous SharePoint websites within its environment.
The health care network’s data concerns began in 2014. The Information Management team, led by Information Governance Office Manager Matt McClelland, wanted to perform a proactive internal investigation to thwart future exposure. The company realized that with a software tool to index its data, it would be fully prepared to place potentially relevant files in a legal hold or conduct e-discovery.
Perhaps more importantly, if the company could attain keener insight into its data, it could then minimize its data footprint by removing redundant, obsolete and trivial (ROT) data, resulting in a sleeker, more efficient information management process. Cognizant of the need for patient and corporate confidentiality, the organization could also improve security by classifying its files, analyzing internal data usage trends and assigning permissions and protocols to its most sensitive information.
As a first step, the health care network licensed a software platform from Nuix to generate critical transparency into their data. Even though there would be a significant upfront effort in indexing and analyzing dozens of terabytes of data, BCBSNC knew the potential long-term benefits would justify the project. But to succeed with such a large and complex data set, McClelland recognized the need to bring in expertise to execute the initiative and train his staff.
The Technology practice of FTI Consulting joined the team to spearhead the data indexing and analysis services. FTI’s team created a custom content management solution leveraging Nuix. This new tool, powered by the patented Nuix Engine, allowed FTI to:
- Systematically split up the client’s data into smaller, more manageable case files;
- Conduct parallel processing on multiple servers simultaneously, assigning different jobs to each one for faster data output;
- Perform security scans to identify hidden and secure folders.
As part of the solution, FTI’s application would control and monitor the entire process allowing for around-the-clock processing. During the two months it took to process and index all of the company’s data, regular updates and reports were provided to BCBS, directly from the application, keeping the organization apprised of the status.
As a result of the joint efforts between FTI and BCBSNC, 43 TBs of data were comprehensively indexed, allowing BCBSNC to assign security protocols to its files while readying the health care network for any future legal challenges and e-discovery campaigns.
Once fully indexed, the newly organized data was then provided to a separate information governance platform, which allowed BCBSNC to assign lifecycle management policies and controls to support the company’s regulatory, legal and operational requirements.
FTI also trained the BCBSNC team on how to use the FTI/Nuix application to investigate specific division’s networks, identify duplicative data, and how to extract essential data such as Personally Identifiable Information (PII). With this high level of information transparency, the BCBSNC team could start to understand the magnitude and nature of the risks and opportunities inherent in the data.
Impact: 43 terabytes of data indexed, allowing BCBSNC to assign security protocols and ready the healthcare network for any future legal challenges.
As the data footprint grows larger, sophisticated tools and methods are required to manage information. The partnership between FTI and BCBSNC continues to mature with tools and methodologies to provide further analysis, identify useless data, and keep their indices up to date. FTI’s experience and custom solutions play a key role in supporting BCBSNC efficiently manage their data.