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Electronic Messaging Recordkeeping Requirements

Electronic Messaging Recordkeeping Requirements, CRS In Focus, May 21, 2019

“The emergence and widespread governmental adoption of digital technologies that create information subject to the retention and preservation requirements of the Federal Records Act (FRA; 44 U.S.C. Chapters 21, 29, 31, and 33), as amended, and the Presidential Records Act (PRA; 44 U.S.C. §§2201-2209), as amended,may be of interest to Congress, officials charged with maintaining government records, and the public. Processes related to the preservation and archiving of born-digital record materials created by email (referred to in statute as electronic mail), text messages, mobile applications, and other forms of electronic messaging—whether created using official, governmental resources, or through personal devices owned by government employees—may be of interest to multiple audiences. Congressional interest arises from many perspectives, including compliance with federal record keeping laws,the consequence of more-complicated (and potentially incomplete) record keeping information, and the ability of Congress to conduct oversight of executive branch activities…”

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