What Changes Do We Need To See In eDiscovery? Part VI

by Harold Burt-Gerrans

Several years ago, we hosted what I believe was the first true single-language review of multi-lingual documents. At that time, Google search could only find one eDiscovery or processing software vendor that included bulk/mass machine language translation as a feature, and that was just being released in their most recent processing engine. As they were making it available to their clients, we had already hosted a complete case.

In our case, all the documents were primary language identified and machine translated to English. All the indexing and analytics were done using both the original text and English text. The whole review team was English. This approach worked well in this specific matter and it saved the client from having to build review teams for specific languages – especially helpful since many email threads would have needed to be split among review teams as the languages often varied between forwards and replies.

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Despite timestamps being ubiquitous, the understanding of their exact meaning is mostly overlooked in favor of fully-automated, correlation-based approaches. Existing work for practitioners aims at understanding Windows and is not directly applicable to Unix-like systems.

In this paper, we review how each layer of the software stack (kernel, file system, libraries, application) influences MACB timestamps on Unix systems such as Linux, OpenBSD, FreeBSD and macOS.

We examine how POSIX specifies the timestamp behavior and propose a framework for automatically profiling OS kernels, user mode libraries and applications, including compliance checks against POSIX.

Our implementation covers four different operating systems, the GIO and Qt library, as well as several user mode applications and is released as open-source.

Based on 187 compliance tests and automated profiling covering common file operations, we found multiple unexpected and non-compliant behaviors, both on common operations and in edge cases.

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Learn more: https://dfrws.org/presentation/a-systematic-approach-to-understanding-macb-timestamps-on-unixlike-systems/

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