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Agility Is Key as Email Archiving Evolves at JP Morgan

Financial services and banking giant JP Morgan has had to be agile in dealing with its email archiving system. The company swapped out one system because it did not meet its requirements, saw its vendor acquired twice, and now is getting ready to move its archiving system from one email system to a new one. Such experiences can be common in the rapidly emerging but turbulent email archiving market.

J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. was founded in 1799 and is one of the nation's oldest financial services firms. The company has more than 200,000 employees, offices in about 100 counties, and $2.3 trillion in assets.

Because of the nature of its business, the corporation has been at the forefront of the email archiving. "Industry regulations require that we be able to monitor electronic communication among our regulated users, such as stockbrokers and private bankers, and their clients," says Lance Livingston, lead engineer at JP Morgan. The company has to be sure that brokers and traders are providing consistent information about stocks to customers or else it can be censured by regulators.

If the company did not closely monitor communications, it could face fines of as much as $10 million. Consequently, the financial services entity has been able to justify the $100,000 annual maintenance tag that comes with its email archiving system.

At the turn of the millennium, the corporation was working with IBM Corp. (NYSE: IBM) Commonstore email archiving product, but found it had limitations. There was inconsistency in the way the system archived data. "We found there we were missing large chunks of email, so we could not provide true 30-day validations of what correspondences took place," Livingston says.

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