Unit 3

Outcome 3

Section 1 - Types of information

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Section 2 - Safe Storage and Efficient Retrieval

Safe storage is the ability to store data in a way so that it won’t get damaged, so with a physical document like a letter or application form it would be filed away into a folder, filing cabinet or even a computer (by scanning it onto the computer). The method of storage should be dictated by the importance and sensitivity of the data as this will dictate how much protection should be placed on a document. Highly sensitive information must be securely stored while less important things such as applications will have a folder in which they are all stored.

Retrieving information efficiently starts with both safe and smart storage. This is due to how information must be stored has to follow some logic otherwise it will be lost. If it follows this process usually there will be a system in place be it a filing system of alphabetical dependant on name for letters, or a numerical if looking at applications for information that are being complete. If this is followed in some form then it will be easy to find the information as you would just be able to follow a simple trail and quickly find the information that you need.

Section 3 - Different types of storage and retrieval system

With information in multiple forms (electronic and physical) it is required to have multiple ways to store and retrieve the documents and information that is stored. When looking at physical data the storage and retrieval will be based on something that is on or can be attached to a document. I see this with application forms for Dropped Kerbs as they are first stored by the first letter of the road the kerb is being lowered on. After this they are then stored by VAC Number this then allows us to keep the applications in a form of date order allowing us to quickly find applications. With some of the less common applications they are just sorted numerically in there files as there is less of them to sort through. With information of higher importance or is being held for legal requirements such as if it needs to be stored for a certain period of time. As a result these areas are usually only accessed by certain people or access can be granted by a select group, this allows the data to be stored safely and securely.

Electronically applications for spreadsheets and databases are commonly used to store information that will be accessed frequently and used on at least a weekly basis as it allows easy access to those who need to use it and those who need to view and search for data it is an easy way to do so. Most of these applications have multiple uses as spreadsheets can be used to turn numeric data into graphs and charts and also calculate differences while databases can be used to create and run reports that can be sent out to others. For storing entire documents it is easy to just use the hard drive on your computer as you can implement multiple password checks and other locks such as pin codes to prevent unauthorised access though it may not be wise as if others need to access a document then it may mean a simple password should be used as to allow others to use it. Another form of this type of storage is using a cloud/off site location as this can allow for you to keep only the shortcuts to documents on your hard drive while allowing you access to the full document to change. By this being offsite it means any local issues that may damage a network will not affect the documents as they are not part of that system.

Section 4 - Legal Requirements

The main code that should be followed is the Data Protection Act 1998, due to it focusing on the storage of sensitive data. The DPA has 8 key principles to do with storing data they are as follows:

  1. be processed fairly and lawfully
  2. be obtained only for lawful purposes and not processed in any manner incompatible with those purposes.
  3. be adequate, relevant and not excessive.
  4. be accurate and current.
  5. not be retained for longer than necessary.
  6. be processed in accordance with the rights and freedoms of data subjects.
  7. be protected against unauthorized or unlawful processing and against accidental loss, destruction or damage.
  8. not be transferred to a country or territory outside the European Economic Area unless that country or territory protects the rights and freedoms of the data subjects

Each of these focuses on a specific way to keep data correctly protected. The first is self explanatory as it is just saying to get the data by legal means. The second follows the first but is focusing on what the data is to be used for. The third focuses on what data is to be collected so if I look at my job and use a skip licence I ask for things I need to complete the licence such as location of skip, size, duration, company applying. I wont ask them what driver is going as I don't need to know that information and as such is irrelevant to me and excess information. The fourth is basically asking is the data the most up to date version of it as to make sure there is no changes. the fifth is making sure that the data is only held for while it is needed this may mean holding it a while after in case any problems arise with it. The sixth is one that looks at how the information from the subject is collected, basically asking if the subject knew their information was taken and what it was being used for. The seventh is to protect in case the data is affected by an unforeseen circumstance such as hacking or fire, allowing the data to remain safe and protected even during these situations. The eighth is to protect against the data being transferred to somewhere without a form of data protection legislation implemented as to keep the data secure.