What Are The Best Practices For Data Archiving?

Depending on the kind of work and the legal requirements, data archiving may be important and necessary or not required (except minimally). For some companies that are involved in manufacturing, product development, research, medical and legal work there are mandatory requirements for long-term storage of data.

However, in some cases, long-term data storage can actually backfire, so the company and its legal team have to decide what kind of data should be archived and for how long. In the case of law-suits or conflicts, it is possible that the court can ask for very old records if they are discoverable, causing unnecessary problems. When data has been deleted or is not discoverable, it may be a safer option for the organization. If it is not needed it is better to get rid of it, freeing up resources and eliminating unimportant and unnecessary historical data.

Data retention practices

Data keeps on accruing, whether it is emails, presentations, projects, information, accounts or spreadsheets. This eats into valuable resources and slows the systems. At the same time keeping all the data indefinitely is not advisable or essential. Even legal requirements usually have a time-frame for which you need to keep the data – beyond that time it is simply better to get rid of the data.

For certain companies and processes keeping data for longer time frames may be critical. Depending on what the future data needs are for the organization, it is best to have the right file archiving solution and use it.

It is crucial that you document the data retention practices so that there is a clear record of how long you are keeping what data. The older data can then be deleted. It is important that any future legal compliance and discovery requirements are met in case of any legal problems even if unforeseeable.

Using data archiving software

Data retention or data preservation in the correct form is important. You may think that you are meeting requirements if you are using data backup solutions. There is a major difference between data backup solution and data archiving software. Standard data backup software has a limited scope since it can only find something known with specific parameters like a file name from a known application from a particular server during a designated time. This makes finding the data and using it quite difficult.
Backup software will only restore files with specific names whereas when you use a data archival software it will be able to find files even with specific words or within a particular time frame, making your search more efficient.

On the other hand, data archiving software may look for the file either by its name or by its contents across servers. This can make it easier to use by different people and it also takes up much less space. Many data archiving solutions are available and you can surely find something that will suit your specific requirements regarding storage, retrieval, and deletion.

Conclusion

It is not sufficient just to use a data backup solution. It is necessary to meet legal requirements if data retention for a certain time period is essential. A data archiving system will free up resources, make data easier to find and prove to be an invaluable resource in times of need.