It's no secret that company records - whether in physical or digital form – often contain information that makes them at risk for criminal activity. That's why organizations invest in extensive data security solutions and many list the protection of their sensitive information as the most crucial component of their business. While many have examined the dangers or keeping digital information on-site, there are just as many risks involving the storage of physical files.
Many companies like the idea of hanging onto physical records instead of transitioning to digital format because they feel safer with the traditional method. Not only are old-school executives more familiar with papers and folders than computer files, there's some peace of mind in knowing that information is only contained on physical paper. Storing files on a server is too abstract for some people - they don't know what's happening to their information because they can't see it. However, the storage of paper records isn't exactly a perfect process.
Both physical records and digital copies have some risk of loss. Digitized records have risks with cyber-security, however, should an office catch on fire, paper records burn. Computers may burn, but if documents are stored in an off-site server or cloud environment, the information is still safe. This is not the case with physical records.
"In fact, there are several characteristics of tangible files that make them uniquely harmful if lost," states an article in the online publication File Trek. "There is no way to institute modern security features with regards to physical records. It is extremely difficult to trace exactly who has seen a piece of paper."
Ultimately, in order to preserve the security of data while protecting it from unforeseen events, it is best to partner with a records storage provider. Professional records facilities maintain strict safety and security procedures that greatly reduce the risks associated with storing paper records. Additionally, many professional records storage providers can assist firms with digitization and remote hosting solutions.