Our increasing dependence upon computers has mandated that the government take action to protect us. As a result, there has been a great deal of records management legislation passed over the past few years. There has been so much legislation enacted, in fact, that it can be overwhelming for anybody whose career doesn't involve politics to try and sift through. That is where we come in. In order to make sure that you are fully prepared for the latest changes in the law, we are going to provide you with the following ultimate cheat sheet on records management law.
Records management legislation has made digital storage the most effective way to comply with the law
Converting everything to digital files and dumping your paper records has proven to be an effective way to make your organization operate more efficiently and save a lot of money.
The latest legislation requires that you keep certain documents for a very long time. For example, tax documents must be kept intact for at least six years. In other words, you have to become a document hoarder. Trying to retain – let alone manage – these documents is a very tall order if you are using paper records. Digital records management is much easier.
Records management laws will help protect your company from digital threats
The latest records management laws go to great lengths to protect everyone, including your company, from digital attacks. For example, one of the most popular ways for a hacker to anonymously attack you is via a Virtual Private Network (VPN), which make user identification much more difficult than traditional IP addresses. Canada's Copyright Modernization Act requires that all VPNs retain all of their activity logs for at least six months; this makes it much more difficult for a hacker to disappear after they attempt an intrusion.
Records management laws require that you destroy certain data
Most records management best practices revolve around retaining records. However, some legislation actually requires that you get rid of certain documents. Most documentation that must be destroyed is owned by individuals. For example, under the Code of Practice for Protection of Personally Identifiable Information (PIPEDA), you have to destroy any of your employees' personal data that is not required for your organization to identify them.
Because of records management legislation, copyrighted material is treated differently under the law
The internet has changed the way people can access, alter and ultimately use digital data. For example, a teenager sitting in their room can convincingly edit themselves into a picture of a celebrity in only a few minutes. The possibilities with these technologies are limitless. Many of these applications would have been considered copyright infringement in the past. To adapt, laws have altered to allow fragments of any legally accessible data, copyrighted or not, to be freely used for satires, education and parodies.
Records management legislation has made cloud storage one of the most secure ways to store your data
For a long time, the internet had been like the wild west; anything could happen to you and there was little government protection. This made storing data online a questionable practice. However, records management laws force cloud servers to work harder to protect your data, making cloud storage one of the best record storage solutions.
This cheat sheet takes all of the guesswork out of keeping up with records management legislation
Although the modern era has made records management laws more complex than ever, keeping up with it is easy once all of the legal jargon has been sifted through. The cheat sheet above does just that for you.