Have you ever thought about all the places that your company resides? Have you ever sat down and draw out a diagram (I know I talked about drawing process last time but like visuals aids)? Even if you don’t want to draw a diagram your mind can start to race when you begin thinking about all the places that your data lives.
Of course, you have data on your shared network drives, company computers and email stores. But now think about all the other places that you corporate data could be. Think about flash drives, portable hard drives and company laptops (or personal laptops). Do your employees email files or documents to their personal email accounts or do they remotely access the company network? Now start thinking about how many Blackberries, I-Phones and PDAs are in your environment? All these could house important company data but you may not even realize who has access to what or in what format.
Now think about what you would do if you were asked to produce data from all these different devices and locations. It may be difficult if you are not sure who has what and where at any given time. If your company does not have policies in place to address concerns such as these you may want think about adding some. Then you will know where your data is in the dark of the night and can move on to a different business problem.