Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by dui-lai, Dec 23, 2004.
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Makes me wonder what they have to hide
One thing we have learnt from bitter experience, we have to watch that shower of dross in No 10 like a hawk.
They're just removing (ahem) surplus material to prevent the public getting confused
Of course, how considerate of them
Forgive my suspiscious mind
This blows and sucks at the same time. Can't speak for all GDs, but the increase in shredding just maybe down to many directorates moving to premises where physical storage is not so spacious. New premises will probably means new and various IT systems to cope with different variations or classification of work - therefore virtual space could also be limited?
With a few brown nosers in the civil service, I can't see them wanting to give info that will get the department in the sh1t without a valid excuse to fall back on. I wonder how these PQs were worded, and if it is a case of the Tories taking something out of context, or if this is people going FOI loopy.
If the material is worth hiding it will be classified and therefore on a register of protectively marked material. There will be destruction certificates and therefore an audit trail. And if any of these latter have been destroyed (they have a far longer lifespan than the files detailed within) then this is firm evidence of suppression of information.
Investigate on, o information commissioner!
Well THIS Department certainly isn't shredding stuff - that is a big no-no, and anyway we wouldn't do it - the Civil Sevice can't function without accurate records .
We are all ready and set for the FOI Act in Jan, if the software works OK by then.... However, a lot of Files were stored in a basement that has been heavily contaminated by Asbestos. A recent Hansard exchange:
"Mr. Gerald Howarth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what effect asbestos contamination of his Department's files will have on access to those files under the Freedom of Information Act 2000."
"Mr. Caplin: The information contained in the files previously stored in an asbestos contaminated basement has been safeguarded. A project board has been set up to formalise the consideration of the options open to the Ministry of Defence whereby this information may be made accessible for both departmental use, to enable the Ministry of Defence to respond to requests under the Freedom of Information Act and to allow the normal transfer of records to the National Archives.
However, in view of the nature of the hazard posed to those who are likely to come into contact with the files, there must be a strict health and safety regime in place. In the circumstances, requests for information from files affected will be temporarily deferred until a fully operational facility is in place for their safe handling. "
So that's all right then
It's all politically motivated horse-sh~t. The Data Protection Act already states that info over 12 months old, unless it's 'active' - i.e. being used for an on-going case (e.g. a benefits claim), is not allowed to be kept. Most of teh civil service uses a private contractor for records storage, and they have a massive backlog of old files to 'weed' of old info and then shred. The upscaling of the destruction of info is just to comply with the Act in a quicker timescale. It's also to do with the restructuring (thanks, Gordon) and using that as an opportunity to destroy info, especially in several departments that are also moving to using a contractor to manage the storage.
The emails thing is to preserve server space as most people are well above their predicted 'profile' capacity.
Yes, you've sussed out what I do for a living (shoot me now...)
End of thread?
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