Using too much paper poses more than just an environmental threat. Paper is also a security threat in the digital age. There is a lot happening in the cybersecurity world, now that our data is floating around the Internet in various clouds, servers and hard drives, but data printed on paper requires physical security, too.
The Government Business Council surveyed a group of federal employees and found that they believe just 54 percent of their agency’s data is available digitally. Considering the amount of time we spend talking about data and cloud security, it’s interesting that nearly half of the data that the government owns is still on paper. Not all of the data should be or needs to be made digital, but the physical security of these documents is still an important issue.
Many agencies have begun digitizing their records. The U.S. Copyright Office, for example, has already moved 17 million historic copyrights, dating back to 1870, into a digital format. The digitization effort solves several problems. First, the agency will have the ability to search its database on a computer, rather than manually. Second, that database, which is made up of open information, will be available to the public. Third, the agency is future-proofing its data, ensuring that it will be accessible for generations to come.
Other agencies have saved storage space and time, increased security and laid the foundation for the sustainable future of information management. Check out the infographic below to learn more about the government’s efforts to digitize information.