A recent column in the San Jose Mercury News (California) left me shaking my head. According to the column, a lawyer wanted to use a portable scanner in the offices of the Santa Clara County planning department to scan documents for a case, but was told that scanning was not allowed – only photocopying, at 10 cents a page. The reason, supposedly was to "preserve the integrity" of documents that could be lost or damaged if they were scanned.
Records Retention is More Manageable
Such stories should not lead to despair about the law's ability and willingness to use electronic technology. From generating electronic files on personal computers, to scanning of paper files, to storing electronic records in a remote "cloud" location, computers have made the issue of records retention more manageable. The principles of electronic file and record management are the same as those that have governed paper documents. It is just the management process itself that is changed, and almost in every instance it is for the better.
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