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Introducing Relativity Trace: Truly Proactive Compliance

In a world where a single bad actor can ruin a corporation’s reputation and trigger billions of dollars in fines, it rarely pays off to be reactive. Delaying action on suspicious activity—risking an investigation, regulatory inquiry, or litigation—is simply no longer an option.

Relativity was built as a platform for e-discovery and investigations—typically reactive processes where case teams must go back in time to find out what happened. 

In addressing the challenges of e-discovery, Relativity has become a powerful platform with sophisticated tools that enable a case team to sift through hundreds of millions of documents to find what’s specifically relevant to them. But its value doesn’t have to end there.

When we heard from customers interested in using Relativity for proactive compliance monitoring, we saw an opportunity to design a purpose-built application on the platform to help compliance leaders in some of the most highly regulated organizations in our community. That’s when Relativity Trace was born.

The Stakes Have Never Been Higher

For financial institutions and other highly regulated organizations, the current regulatory environment places a heavy burden to detect and take action proactively on non-compliant behavior among their employees. 

If compliance failures do occur, there is a massive risk of legal, reputational, and financial damage. Banks have been fined hundreds of billions of dollars since the financial crisis for compliance and regulatory errors. Bribery and corruption have brought down political leaders and corporate executives.

The obligation to detect abuse is only increasing. The Banking Royal Commission in Australia, MiFID II and MAR in the EU, and the Senior Managers Regime in the UK are just a few examples of the expanding watchdogs for ineffective compliance processes.

So what’s a compliance team to do?

Let’s imagine a typical scenario. Say you’re at a major financial services institution, with 1,000 traders generating 250,000 communications per day with tools like Bloomberg Chat, Skype, email, and audio files. How do you possibly stay on top of it all with a small compliance team?

Cue Relativity Trace. Built on Relativity and optimized for RelativityOne, Trace is a compliance monitoring application that enables teams to ingest all forms of communication—including email, chat, and audio files—in near-real time, and flag the highest risk content for further review.

A Defensible Compliance Strategy

With Trace, compliance teams can continuously and automatically monitor internal and outgoing communications for nefarious activities such as insider trading, collusion, and money laundering. They’re able to set custom rules, enabling every team to define their own criteria for what constitutes a potential compliance violation.

In addition to logic- and terms-based rules, you can leverage the full suite of Relativity Analytics functionality, including active learning, to automatically score communications for risk. With Relativity Assisted Review integrated, compliance teams have a reliable and validated tool to ensure their team is quickly able to pounce on any potential violations from across their organizations.

Relativity’s comprehensive audit logs capture whether the system flagged particular content and any user actions made on that content. This record provides defensibility throughout the compliance monitoring process.

This means that your team of five can monitor a quarter-million new communications each day without blinking an eye. Trace performs the first pass review for you. All you need to do is log in and review those alerts.

Imagine a system to automatically flag a potentially suspicious Bloomberg conversation between two traders who seem dangerously close to insider trading: one has a contact with a leader in a key investment industry, and it reads like he’s warning his colleague of an upcoming announcement that could have an impact on one of the largest companies in that space.

This is the kind of risky behavior you need to uncover as quickly as possible so you can investigate it, put a stop to it, and be proactive with regulators.

Trace isn’t just for financial services, either. Companies across industries can leverage the tool to protect themselves from unethical behavior like improper sales tactics, discrimination, bribery and corruption, and more.

Centralized Legal and Compliance Efforts

The best part is, if a matter does progress to investigation or litigation, it’s already in RelativityOne. You’re ready to kick off end-to-end e-discovery with the full power of the platform. So, say your investigation of that suspicious Bloomberg message led to the unraveling of a large web of insider trading. There are dozens of potential custodians, inside and outside of your company, and it’s going to take a huge effort to bring the issue to a legal resolution.

As you see the data beginning to unfold, you can immediately notify your in-house legal team to bring them up to speed on the problem and work with them inside your RelativityOne environment—eliminating the back-and-forth of separate legal and compliance tools, and freeing up your teams to collaborate more effectively in the best interests of your organization.

With the hot documents already in your RelativityOne environment, and with a project strategy in place, your teams can loop in outside counsel and an e-discovery service provider to help gather other data, use Relativity Analytics to pull back any additional, potentially relevant information based on what you already know, and review and produce in record time.

All without leaving Relativity.

Go Beyond e-Discovery

Trace is one of many ways your team can make the most of your investment in RelativityOne. Teams around the world—in addition to the Relativity team here in Chicago—are hard at work crafting new applications for the platform to help you meet more business needs with less spend.

Organize data. Discover the truth. Act on it. That’s our mission—and it doesn’t stop with e-discovery.

Learn More about Proactive Compliance with Relativity Trace

Jordan Domash is Relativity's general manager of Relativity Trace. He guides a focused team in the development of this tool, built on the Relativity platform, for proactive compliance monitoring, supporting engineering, marketing, and sales.