One of my favorite topics… hidden application metadata.
Microsoft Office and other documents including PowerPoint, Word, and Excel among others can be a rich source of discoverable information for the plaintiff, especially if the author of the document didn’t take the time to scrub all hidden and personal information before finalizing it. Be aware all of this hidden and personal metadata can’t be altered after a litigation hold should have been applied.
Several types of hidden and personal data can and will be saved by default in an Office document if the correct precautions are not taken. The first point to remember is that Office applications are by default capturing data as the document in question is created, reviewed and revised. Data such as:
- Comments, revision marks from tracked changes, versions, and ink annotations
- Document properties and personal information. Document properties, also known as metadata (metadata: Data that describes other data. For example, the words in a document…
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