Digital Preservation

Digital Preservation Framework

We care about digital records and we have a plan on how to handle them.

By sharing and updating this overarching framework we show our committment to our stakeholder communities.

2020

Previous Version

1. Purpose

The purpose of this document is to show that we care about digital records and we have a plan on how to handle them. We also want to be a trustworthy digital repository, as described in ISO 16363:2012.

2. Standards Compliance

All our digital records policies will comply with industry standards, applicable laws, and other department and division policies.

3. Administrative Responsibilities

The Archives’ mission and mandate is to:

  1. Assist Utah government agencies to manage their records
  2. Preserve records of enduring value, and
  3. rovide quality access to public information.
Each of these responsibilities involves digital records.

4. Organizational Viability

Digital preservation planning occurs at every stage of a record’s lifecycle, just like with paper records that are preserved at the Archives.

5. Financial Sustainability

The Utah State Archives has identified specific resources to back its digital preservation program.

6. Technological Support Levels

Records are managed based on the support needed to preserve them, which is determined by a record’s uniqueness, risk of loss, feasibility and cost of preservation, and other appraisal criteria. Staff archivists--in consultation with record and information specialists, system administrators, the State Archivist, and others--determine the support needed.

7. System Security

State Archives verifies the authenticity and integrity of its digital records via checksums and periodic reviews and audits of digital storage. The Archives also has security protocols in place for the physical and virtual safety of its digital records.

8. Procedural Accountability

Utah State Archives creates and maintains policies, procedures, and protocols.

NDSA Levels of Preservation Analysis

In 2019 an internal audit of the Utah State Archives digital preservation program was conducted by Digital Bedrock. As part of this audit the Utah State Archives was evaluated according to the NDSA Levels of Preservation Analysis. The results of this analysis have established baselines for where the institution currently ranks, and benchmarks that we are working to achieve through the application of targeted strategic planning. This roadmap for advancing up the NDSA levels of preservation are provided below. This table will be updated at the beginning of each calendar year to demonstrate institutional progress.

Legend Red Cells are items that need to be acted on. Yellow cells are items that have been partially acted on. Green cells are items that have been acted on.
Category 01: Storage
Actions Required for Level 01 (Know Your Content): 1. Have two complete copies in separate locations. 2. Document all storage media where content is stored. 3. Put content into stable storage.    
Actions Required for Level 02 (Protect Your Content): 1. Have three complete copies with one in a separate geographic location. 2. Document storage/storage media and the resources and dependencies needed to function      
Potential Strategies for Archives to Reach Next Level(s): 1. Procure a Digital Preservation System. 2. Develop a secure storage backup plan. 3. Develop a secure third storage backup that is in a separate geographic location. 4. Inventory the collection and document where/how digital assets are stored. 5. Document all storage in a centralized place and document the resources and dependencies required for them to function.
Category 02: Integrity
Actions Required for Level 01 (Know Your Content): 1. Verify integrity information if it's been provided with content. 2. Generate integrity information if it is not provided with content. 3. Virus check all content and isolate/quarantine content as needed.    
Actions Required for Level 02 (Protect Your Content): 1. Verify integrity information when moving/copying information. 2. Use write-blockers when working with original media. 3. Backup integrity information and store a copy in a separate location from the content.    
Potential Strategies for Archives to Reach Next Level(s): 1. Procure a DPS that can perform virus and fixity checks for all ingests. 2. Procure adequate systems (with write-blockers) for appropriate staff. 3. Develop and publish policy governing the fixity and virus checking processes.    
Category 03: Control
Actions Required for Level 01 (Know Your Content): 1. Determine the human and software agents authorized to read, write, move, and delete content.        
Actions Required for Level 02 (Protect Your Content): 1. Document the human and software agents authorized to read, write, move, and delete content and apply these.        
Potential Strategies for Archives to Reach Next Level(s): 1. Determine people and systems authorized to "touch" data and the processes where this happens. 2. Document in policy the people/systems that are authorized to "touch" data and the situations where they are allowed to do so.      
Category 04: Metadata
Actions Required for Level 01 (Know Your Content): 1. Create inventory of content, also documenting current storage locations. 2. Backup inventory and store at least one copy separately from content.      
Actions Required for Level 02 (Protect Your Content): 1. Store enough metadata to know what the content is. This includes some combination of administrative, technical, descriptive, preservation, and structural metadata.        
Potential Strategies for Archives to Reach Next Level(s): 1. Inventory the permanent collection and document all digital assets and core defined metadata elements for them. 2. Inventory and document all storage locations. 3. Backup inventory(s) in dispersed locations. 4. Determine mandatory minimums for all metadata types we require and document in policy.  
Category 05: Content
Actions Required for Level 01 (Know Your Content): 1. Document file formats and other essential content characteristics, including how/when they were identified.        
Actions Required for Level 02 (Protect Your Content): 1. Verify file formats and other essential content characteristics. 2. Build relationships with content creators to encourage sustainable file choices.      
Potential Strategies for Archives to Reach Next Level(s): 1. Define and document in policy the minimum standards for file formats and the essential characteristics of digital records. 2. Procure a Digital Preservation System that can verify formats and provide reports on formats and file characteristics. 3. Develop policies and guidance for content creators on "best" file formats for preservation.    

Page Last Updated May 5, 2020.