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How to Preserve and Store Important Research Data

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There is no one-size-fits-all in data storage, management, and preservation. If we’re talking about important research data, this is equally more important to know how to store it safely during the research and after the project has been completed. In this field, the tiniest bit of data collected is important in the approval, support, and retesting of results and theories.

If you are in the field of research — whether alone or in collaboration with another person — you might want to check your need for a disc publisher. This will allow you to store data in DVDs and CDs, which are inherently safer and more secure than using corruptible flash drives and even hackable cloud storage. Still, nothing is fool-proof when it comes to storing data, so backing it up to a cloud, an HDD, or university network drives is also advisable.

Understand Your Data

Before you look for and pick the storage solution that’s right for your data, know what kind of data you have first. How fast do you need to access the data if needed? If lost, how soon do you need the data back? How long will the data need to be stored? Will the data still be relevant in 10 years, 15 years, or 20 years?

Mind Your Compliance Needs

lock as symbol for Privacy and General Data Protection Regulation on a notebook computer

If your research is in the medical field or the financial industry, the study will be highly regulated. There is a high requirement for compliance and security in these sectors, so it’s best if you can check the appropriate storage requirements for your data. If your research is subject to scrutiny and evaluation, you might want to store the data in not only a safe space but an easily accessible one.

Choosing to outsource your data management could also have a serious effect on the viability and the integrity of the data. Ensure that the data management service provider has the right credentials required by your field. If they are not in total compliance, you may face penalties later on for subjecting your data to unsafe storage solutions.

Focus Data Management Resources

Identify the more important data that needs to be saved and retained longer. For example, there are two separate email accounts used by the researchers — one is to share data information, and another one is to send out snippets of reports to universities and research centres. As a rule, the one that shares data among the researchers has a higher probability of being needed in the future for further research. The backing up of that email account should be prioritized over the other account.

Find Flexibility

Many research facilities today allow for a mobile workforce. Data should be easily accessible via smartphones, laptops, desktops, and other platforms. The storage system that you will choose for your research data should have editing capabilities and intuitive experience that can transform itself depending on where the data is being accessed from.

It is tempting to choose the most affordable data storage option, but remember that research data can and should be accessed years from now. If the integrity of your data is put in question, your research may be nullified. All the years you have worked for will be relegated to nothing. Choose the storage system wisely and envision if the system can develop with time as technology makes strides.

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