Archiving documents to microfilm makes good sense for every organization, especially if preserving information is a priority. Documents vital to a company’s operation, public records or historical papers need to be retained permanently. Microfilming is the most economical way to safeguard information. Why microfilm when the world has gone digital? Archiving documents digitally seems like a popular, simple and affordable method for storing information. But this approach does not come without some risk.
Because of the vulnerabilities with digital data, microfilm makes a wise backup choice. The best scenario for archiving documents is to deploy both digital and microfilm backups. Digital archives allow you to access information easily and quickly. And microfilm provides the much-needed staying-power for many types of information. Advantages of Archiving Documents with Microfilm Microfilming provides many benefits when you need to protect and preserve critical information. With a life expectancy of decades, you can be assured your records will be available whenever you need them. In addition, microfilming is very economical. In many cases, you’ll pay no more for a microfilm version of your documents than you would for a printed copy. Other cost savings involve storage. Because you won’t need space intensive paper, you can eliminate physical space and filing cabinets. When compared to digital archives, you’ll save on equipment costs. Digital hardware and software evolves quickly. By archiving documents using microfilm, you won’t be required to invest in expensive technology upgrades unless you want to maintain both types of backups. Microfilm is a legally accepted format for records. If you need to maintain your information over long periods of time, microfilming is the best way to go. Why Digital Data Doesn’t Provide the Best Safety Net When you need to preserve information, you need a lasting and reliable method. Digital backups may be an acceptable way to store your data if your business doesn’t depend on the information availability. However, if you must maintain access to information critical to business operations over very long periods of time, digital archives aren’t the best choice. For long-term storage, digitally archiving documents can be a risky venture for several following reasons. As mentioned previously, technology changes quickly and may be rendered obsolete while you still need access to important documents. To avoid this obsolescence, you’ll need to make sure you invest in hardware and software upgrades as they become available. Digital data is also more fragile and susceptible to human and equipment error. Data can be lost because someone didn’t perform appropriate backups or technology failed. Digital documents can also be hacked from inside and outside the organization. Other vulnerabilities include natural disasters, power failures and other events that could make computer systems unavailable.
Archiving documents using microfilm can eliminate risks associated with system outages. Your microfilm records have a better chance of surviving natural disasters, equipment failures and human errors. Finally, digital data may not provide the necessary safeguards to comply with regulations. Archiving documents on microfilm can create lasting, accessible and unalterable information. Microfilm provides a more permanent record that maintains its integrity over time. When your business depends on information for continued operations and/or regulatory compliance, archiving documents on microfilm can provide the necessary safety net. Properly safeguarding your company information delivers unmatched peace of mind.