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Building Unstructured Data Solutions for Today and Tomorrow: Part 4 – Explore & Analyze

Nuix Discover
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If you’ve been following along with this series so far, you know that we’ve covered some of the most critical components of the EDRM (collections and processing) and mapped these to Nuix technology that can be used to build a complete unstructured data solution.

In this article, I’ll focus on exploring and analyzing the data that has been processed, and optionally enriched, using the various built-in settings or integration with third-party technologies. Regardless of your unstructured data challenges, Nuix can provide some incredibly powerful ’lenses‘ that can be used for early data assessment (EDA), early case assessment (ECA), investigation labs, and to obtain other insights from the data that can help your organization answer even the most complex questions.

Through the Looking Glass

At Nuix, these lenses come in the form of Nuix Investigate® and Nuix Discover®. In the image below you’ll see how these are related to the rest of the Nuix platform.

Data Sources Graphic

Before jumping into it, I think it’s important to know how we’ve gotten here. I’ve been helping clients solve some of the toughest and most complex unstructured data challenges for almost a decade. During that time, I’ve seen many tools used to make sense of the data.

Whether you’re creating reports or assessments, generating insights, or solving questions, one thing is certain—you need the right tool for the job. For a tool to be effective in this area, it needs to be responsive, scalable, and span across multiple data formats. Equally important, the interface needs to be sophisticated and intuitive, regardless of the user’s experience.

Many of the common challenges that organizations face in this area include:

  • Making better-informed decisions and solving cases faster
  • Providing easy-to-use analytics for disparate unstructured data
  • Easily making sense of people, objects, locations, and events
  • Reducing data volumes for downstream use cases

Going back to Nuix Investigate and Nuix Discover, both provide extremely powerful lenses to tackle these problems and provide some amazing and unique capabilities. What I love about these products is that depending on your role within an organization, you can get a drastically different experience, but it all stems from the SAME data. Regardless of how you are approaching your data exploration or analysis, the reality is that Nuix Investigate and Nuix Discover can:

  • Establish your case position sooner and identify the most important data with comprehensive searching, filtering, and high-level or low-level visualizations and analytics
  • Cull massive amounts of data quickly while reducing costs normally associated with outsourced workflows
  • Enable your users to collaborate on case data and other unstructured data while protecting sensitive information with role-based access to data sets and product features.

Built for Success

Aside from that, some other important, enterprise-ready features that Nuix Investigate and Nuix Discover bring to the table include:

  • Single sign-on. Less fumbling around for application-specific credentials
  • Near-native document viewing. Skip downloading Microsoft Office native files to view them outside of the application; instead, access them directly within your active session
  • Scalability. Dealing with large volumes of data can be challenging for some software, but we have some unique ways to meet the growing demand of increasing data volumes.

One last thing worth mentioning is the use case for successfully leveraging Nuix Investigate and Nuix Discover. I am often asked “Why do you offer two different web applications, and which one is better?” In the simplest terms, it comes down to the lenses I mentioned earlier. I view the different web applications as a differentiator and something that helps define our ability to provide a comprehensive unstructured data solution.

"One of the biggest problems investigation teams are facing is the backlog of evidence,” said Charles Kline, Product Manager for Nuix Investigate. “Nuix Investigate enables investigators and their teams to collaboratively and solve problems faster, reducing the time between acquisition of the evidence and making informed decisions."

If you’re looking at this from an eDiscovery lens, you may equate its abilities to early data assessment. For investigations, this is an all-in-one forensic powerhouse with the ability to drill deeper into communication analysis. From a governance, risk, compliance (GRC) lens, the ability to search across large volumes of data very quickly is a work of art. The user experience is fantastic for collaboration between non-technical and semi-technical users with a simple and easy-to-use interface.

Nuix Investigate is an amazingly simple, lightweight web application that is an overlay to existing Nuix cases created previously using the power of the Nuix Engine. The cases are transparent and require no exports or load files: just log in and go! Now you can explore and analyze the data for your use case:

  • eDiscovery
    • Early data assessment including search term vetting, relationships, and file type analysis
    • Dashboard views to provide visual perspectives and streamline search and downstream workflows like review and tag
    • Determine whether the case can be quickly settled or need to move into litigation.
  • Forensic Investigations
    • Easily sift through disparate data types—forensic disk/mobile images, logs, chats, and more—and find what you’re looking for quickly
    • Examine the relationships of people, objects, locations, and events using visual analytics and ultimately see who has been talking to whom
    • Review volumes of images as thumbnails.
  • Other Use Cases
    • Governance, ROT cleanup, GDPR/CCPA assessments, privacy/risk/compliance
    • Unstructured data warehouses and litigation-readiness repositories

Nuix Investigate

In Nuix Discover, exploring and analyzing data is just as easy, but is geared more towards the eDiscovery and legal community. With a slew of serious analytics like concept clouds, mines, cubes, mapper, and predictive coding, coupled with fast and responsive search back-end, sifting through large volumes of user-generated data (emails, business documents, chats, etc.) is so seamless. Lawyers, paralegals, and other legal professionals will feel right at home with Nuix Discover. It’s designed to be familiar to their background with an intuitive interface, low learning curve, customizable workspaces, and multiple visual cues.

Nuix Discover is an incredibly sophisticated and intuitive web application with mature analytics and visualizations. Additionally, it has the unique distinction of being able to work independently or together with other Nuix software.

Once you create a case and either ingest or import data, you can:

  • Enable discovery and legal teams to dramatically improve the speed and quality of document review while delivering profound time and cost savings
  • Employ concepts, mines, mapper, social network analysis, sampling, predictive coding, search terms, and more to complete true early case assessment
  • Derive case intelligence and fact-finding in compliance and internal investigations
  • Sampling and validation for information governance activities

Nuix Discover

Better Together

For maximum benefit, organizations can use Nuix Investigate and Nuix Discover in tandem, especially for litigation use cases. By using Nuix Investigate first to explore the data you have and identify the most important subset, you can then easily promote the data to Nuix Discover where your in-house or outside counsel (or anyone else with approved access) can access the data for litigation purposes which may include review and production work.  

This is an interesting dynamic and many organizations are starting to recognize its value, especially when it comes to controlling costs and minimizing their risk profile. At this point, we should re-visit the challenges I mentioned earlier and see how Nuix Investigate and Nuix Discover can solve them all while building towards the complete unstructured data solution, including:

  • Simple, intuitive web interfaces where anyone (internal or external) can easily explore and analyze the data
  • Fully integrated analytics including advanced data visualizations and everyday analytics to find key facts and patterns more quickly
  • Role-based permissions to documents and features, ensuring users can only see the data and take actions on what they’re authorized to
  • Search (basic or complex) and filter any way you like with consistency and pinpoint accuracy
  • Conduct early data assessment in-place and then promote the relevant data directly and securely to visual analysis and review
  • Scale seamlessly from a handful of items to 100+ million documents.

In closing, I hope you recognize the value that both of these lenses bring to an organization and solve some of the largest unstructured data problems, reduce costs, and minimize risk associated with the common workflows that we all deal with.

In the next chapter (part five) of this blog series, we’ll look at moving on to reviewing data and productions with Nuix.