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Records Management Best Practices During COVID-19

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Records management is always an important business requirement, but during the global COVID-19 pandemic, many organizations have found managing, accessing, and protecting their information a major struggle. State and county stay-at-home orders have required many businesses to close their offices and have their employees work from home, which forces many employees to juggle their remote job responsibilities with family demands. Phased reopening plans are easing these constraints, but adjusting to more changes will not be easy.

Amidst these challenges, how do you make sure your company’s records management practices stay efficient, secure, and legally compliant? In this blog we offer best practices for managing your records during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Document Protection

Employees working from home should continue to follow your company’s records management policies and procedures. They should never leave documents with personally identifiable information (PII) or protected health information (PHI) out in the open. If your company has a “clean desk” policy, it should also apply to home offices and workspaces.

Records in Transit

As state and county reopening plans move forward and your employees return to the office, remind them to handle and transport documents and data within a secure chain of custody. They should never leave documents or company-issued electronic devices in cars while traveling to and from work.

Disaster Recovery

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed new data security threats, including Coronavirus phishing scams and “Zoom-bombing.” To protect your business from these threats, your disaster recovery plan must contain provisions for protecting your data.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, continue backing up your operating system, application software, and data files on all devices. Store your backup copies in a secure offsite location. A media storage room features multiple layers of security and advanced preservation systems to prevent unauthorized access and physical damage to your media assets, including:

  • State-of-the-art entry controls
  • Internal storage cages
  • Climate control technology
  • 360-degree monitored surveillance cameras

Only background-screened and pre-authorized data protection personnel have access to the media storage room. They make sure your backup tapes and other electronic media are stored, managed, and tracked with the utmost care.

Document Shredding

During stay-at-home orders, employees may be holding on to corporate documents that are no longer needed. Consumer-grade paper shredders do not meet the security standards of most corporate information disposal policies. Instruct your employees to keep no-longer-needed documents in a box, bring it to the office, and deposit the contents in a shredding collection container for purge shredding. If your shredding and destruction provider offers drop-off shredding, your staff can also visit the nearest drop-off shredding location for an alternate secure privacy protection solution.

We are here to support you during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please call us at 509-586-6090 or complete the form on this page.

CI Information Management provides full-service records and information management in the Tri-Cities, the Yakima Valley, Walla Walla, Hermiston, OR, Moses Lake, Wenatchee, and nearly everywhere in between.