Managing data maintenance
Data maintenance is the process of organizing and curating data according to University needs.
Properly maintaining and caring for data is essential to ensuring that data remains accessible and usable for its intended purposes. The University, its units, and all employees share responsibility for appropriately organizing, labeling, and retaining data.
Consider the following when managing data maintenance:
- Which data is present
- Where data is present
- Whether data is appropriately accessible
- How long data is retained
- Whether records retention requirements apply
Guidelines for data maintenance
When managing data maintenance, follow these guidelines:
- Understand data sensitivity.
Different kinds of data have different levels of sensitivity and therefore different management requirements. For example, Social Security numbers are more sensitive than directory information, and they must be more carefully managed and more rigorously protected. Knowing the sensitivity of data helps you make appropriate data management decisions.
- Inventory data.
You can't protect what you don't know you have. By inventorying data, you become aware of the different kinds and amounts of data in your care and can make informed decisions about how best to manage it. In some cases, you may find data that you didn't even know you had!
- Follow record retention policies and procedures.
When data is no longer relevant or useful, it should be securely disposed of or archived according to the University's needs. Record retention policies establish data management requirements, including how long data should be retained and how it should be stored.
- Use official University accounts and systems rather than personal ones.
The University provides computing accounts and systems in part to facilitate the management of University information. When data is stored in personal or external accounts, it becomes inaccessible to others who may depend on it and may also be inadequately protected.