Destroyed files could let criminals go free

November 14th, 2012 | Posted by Kevin Corley in Document and Information Capture

When documents at a corporation are ruined, it can have long standing effects on the business. If the records contain financial data, destruction could ruin a company, raise questions in an audit or result in legal charges. These problems can be experienced in nearly any industry, though it can be particularly damaging if the documents that were destroyed are a key part in a criminal investigation.

Recently in Wales, documents containing photographic evidence of abuse that allegedly took place at children's homes between 1980 and 1988 were destroyed, putting numerous court cases in flux, according to the Socialist Worker. The news provider said that so far, six men have been convicted for the crime, but the effects of the destruction of the documents on those cases is unknown.

When asked if the documents were destroyed, Clwyd Council worker Sian Griffiths told the source that it received an order to eliminate the records and admitted there was vital evidence for the prosecution in the files.

Rather than leaving it to chance, officials in any court may want to consider the benefits of moving files to the computer with conversion services. That would protect the data from man made or natural destruction and could place a password protection on the information to further safeguard the files.

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