White House’s Email Archiving Negligent

Associated Press wrote this story that was widely covered. It concerns the negligent handling of email by the White House.

You can read the article to learn the details of the story, but what makes this story interesting is that one of the experts quoted in the article is Mimosa’s Bill Tolson. While being interviewed for the story, Bill told me that he was made privy to some of the specifics of the investigation. For example, he learned that the White House email archival process was completely manual. It involved copying email from Outlook into PSTs. I am talking about “drag-and-drop”! Then the PSTs were manually copied to CD-ROM. There was no convention for PST size, name, or location. Is anyone surprised that email is now missing?

A lot of organizations use homegrown and largely manual email archiving. Over the next few years most will be replaced by packaged software solutions or hosted services.

David Ferris

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