Posts from category "Archive Management Blog"

What Data, Exactly, are We Legally Required to Retain?

What are your data preservation requirements?  If you are setting up an archive, chances are you need to find out.  The challenge is that finding a reliable list of legal and regulatory requirements for data preservation sounds a lot easier than it is.

Sungard, a purveyor of hot site services a decade or so back, had someone who was dedicated to maintaining a list of regulatory requirements for data preservation. Circa 2008, the list looked like this:





In that year, analysts were projecting that some $70B had been spent on regulatory compliance, mostly on the use of consulting servies to identify relevant laws and regulations and to establish rention policies.  At the time, the big problem confronting firms was that they were discovering a need to dip into the till again to develop compliant deletion policies.

Alas, the list has not been kept up to date since I last checked, and finding a coherent compilation of data preservation requirements via Internate search engines is a pain.  The concept of data preservation to satisfy regulatory requirements is conflated with lots and lots of rants from folks who, rightly or wrongly, believe that their government, internet service provider or telco are collecting information about them and preserving it for use against them at some future date.

Clearly, different market verticals have different data retention/preservation requirements.  There are also state and national rules and regulations to consider, especially in Europe where the movement to enable on-request identity erasure from corporate and governmental databases has gathered steam.

Watch this space to learn about additional post-2008 retention and deletion rules as we uncover them.  And if you or your business are required to retain certain types of data because of a regulation or law, please use the comment section to let us know.  We hope to have a full listing of all regulations and legal requirements related to data preservation and deletion for use by DMI members and visitors.



Archive is the Killer App for Tape

During our recent visit to IBM in Tucson, AZ, we were honored to meet with tape experts Lee Jesionowski, Calline Sanchez, Tony Pearson and Ed Childers about tape futures and drivers behind the current renaissance of the technology.  One message that came through loud and clear was that current concerns about malware, ransomware and unauthorized disclosures of private data have built a fire under planners to consider was to secure their data better.  That includes the use of tape.



Between the natural air gap provided by tape and the pervasive data encryption service delivered on tape drives from IBM and other vendors, tape rules when it comes to security.

Thanks to IBM for having us out to the Executive Briefing Center and good luck with today's announcement of LTO-8 technology.


Barry M. Ferrite Warns of Z-Pocalypse, Recommends Archiving

In a couple of public service announcements made last year, Barry M. Ferrite, DMI's "trusted storage AI," warned of a coming Z-Pocalypse (zettabyte apocalypse).  Archiving is the only solution for dealing with the data deluge. 

These PSAs provided some "edutainment" to help folks get started with their archive planning.  We hope it helps...



Continuing on this message, Barry returned in the next PSA with this additional information...



Amusing but serious, we hope to add more guidance from Barry in the future on the topics of archive and data management.

Welcome to the Archive Blog at DMI

Archive.  The word means different things to different people. 

Some view it as a practice aimed at preserving data for appropriate periods of time (as defined by business and/or regulatory requirements) and in a resilient and cost-efficient way.

Others see it as a huge bother.  They note the absence of uniform technology standards or agreement between platform vendors, the infighting between vendors of different storage media types (and their paid analyst mouthpieces), the conflation of archive concepts and processes with those of data backup and data protection, and a myriad of other issues that make doing archiving no fun at all.

The purpose of this blog and the community that it supports is to improve the general appreciation of the value of archiving and to evaluate some of the component technologies that are useful to archivists who are interested in managing data throughout its lifecycle.

Archive should be a retention pool for data that isn't accessed or modified very frequently.  In addition to providing a reasonably-priced location for storing inactive bits, an archive should also provide the means for rapid search and retrieval of data as well as appropriate data protection and security/privacy services.  

Archiving requires professional discipline if it is to be done correctly.  From the decisions regarding what types of technologies to use to create the archival platform, to the choices around who should define policies for data preservation, to the best practices for managing archives over time, controlling access to data, limiting data editing, and many other issues, archive is not simple or easy.  Vendors claiming to offer an out-of-the-box plug-and-play solution are pulling our collective leg.

Still, given the current rates of data growth and the on-going evolution of standards on data stewearship, data preservation and archiving best practices need to be defined and vendor solutions need to be evaluated.  Here is where the community of interest in archive at DMI will take on the challenge.  Please offer your insights and comment (constructively) on the insights posted by others.  Together, we can improve the collective wisdom around archiving.