Blog Post

The Future is APIs


Green Pastures

It’s 2019 and workplace applications like Slack, Quip, Confluence and Zendesk have changed the way employees collaborate and communicate across their organizations. Because of their popularity, the volume of new data has dramatically increased, posing a real problem for discovery, compliance, and information governance. While tools like Slack or Quip are great for increasing collaboration and productivity, their focus is not specifically on e-discovery or compliance management. Therefore, it’s incumbent upon organizations to find ways to manage data from these platforms and stay compliant with regulations, like GDPR.

Defensible collection is one of the biggest hurdles for regulated industries when acquiring new tools and applications. In order to introduce new productivity tools, organizations need a solution that allows for search, preservation of edited and deleted data, and defensible collections of each new tool.

So, how do litigation support and information governance professionals reign in new data silos as they sprout up – like daisies – across the organization?

Defensible Collections at the Speed of Light

A next-generation problem needs a next-generation solution. Enter APIs. Application Programming Interfaces are common in web applications. They’re defined as a series of functions used to interact with software. What’s important and what makes APIs so powerful is that they deliberately allow for the exchange of data and metadata – making them a great resource for defensibility.

Think of APIs as the gateway to data and metadata siloed in your different workplace applications. By allowing access to information, APIs empower users and developers to build custom workflows or features on top of applications, as well as capture data and metadata to maintain a defensible collection and preservation strategy. It’s important to note that each platform has sometimes more than one API and that each API serves different functions. For example, Slack has their Discovery API and Audit Logs API, which dictate what information can be collected. These APIs are living, meaning they get updated regularly. 

Think of APIs as the gateway to data and metadata siloed in your different workplace applications.

 So, organizations face the challenge of keeping abreast to different kinds of APIs, their limitations, and also stay on top of updates. At Onna, we recognize the power of APIs when it comes to defensibility in e-discovery and compliance management, as well as robust enterprise search, but also see the challenges updating them can pose to an organization. So, we’ve built a platform to centralize disparate silos via their APIs and control these integrations in one platform, just like a starship command center.

Screen Captures Versus APIs

A common collection method for workplace applications and productivity tools are screen captures that scrape content on a single web page or web application. Screen captures are great for offering context to your data. However, defensibility suffers due to the lack of metadata collections for compliance. The lack of rich metadata fields means organizations can’t support robust search queries when investigating their own data sources.

APIs allow for the collection of data and metadata directly from an application. Because of their different functionalities, different APIs also give you the opportunity to conduct granular collections by narrowing the scope of the data you collect. Over collection and preservation are often overlooked though they remain critical issues that organizations face when archiving enterprise data or gathering specific information for legal matters.

As new tools continue to enter the market, APIs will empower organizations to confidently collect and preserve relevant data for litigation or legal holds

APIs are Future Proof

Onna has made a bet that APIs will power the way we collect, collaborate, and share data. By building a platform that uses API-based connections, Onna is able to extract critical data and metadata from any data source and add layers of granularity for more targeted collections. Audit logs for collection and processing ensure a defensible process at all times for compliance. This helps remove friction when organizations look to purchase productivity tools. As new tools and applications continue to enter the market, APIs will empower organizations to confidently collect and preserve relevant data for litigation or legal holds from 2019 and beyond.

Related Articles

From information governance and e-discovery strategies in the modern workplace to machine learning, read our key takeaways from LTNY.

Download our data sheet on how Onna can help you manage e-discovery across multiple data silos in one central repository.

Learn about how Onna leverages API technologies to conduct granular collections and preservations and process data from Slack.