Among the many advantages that accompany making the switch from tangible record keeping to electronic document management is that files on the computer are often better protected from breach or loss. Saving important documents electronically usually keeps the files from being misplaced, which can wreak havoc when records contain confidential information.
This recently occurred within the United States government, according to Government Executive, after records detailing the funds and inventory dedicated toward providing the Afghan National Army with fuel were destroyed. The source said documents allocating the money and resources were shredded by accident, affecting the $1.1 billion program.
"Officials shredded all ANA POL financial records related to payments totaling nearly $475 million from October 2006 to February 2011," read a letter from the Office of the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction to Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, Government Executive reported. Because this is a violation of government policies, Panetta will be looking into the situation.
Because the records were destroyed, The Frontier Post reported, citing the letter, current figures may not be reliable, which may lead to lost or stolen fuel being unaccounted for.
This most likely would not have occurred if the documents were stored electronically, as protections can be put in place that wouldn't allow for deletion, or could implement reviewing before the file is erased.
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