Welcome to my Weblog. This site is dedicated to my thoughts, views and understanding on anything that touches upon records management, archives management as well as information management in Malaysia. I believe in becoming a 'functional and meaningful' information professional, the term I refer to as person who can function in many ways possible for the betterment of this discipline. Interested parties, may reproduce or quote materials published with the condition that they are credited to Comments must be accompanied by names or pseudonyms. Anonymous postings and those containing profanities and obscenities will be rejected.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Understanding records management

Dear all readers

  1. Are you working now?
  2. Are you tasked with specific scope?
  3. Are you involved in audit process? Are you answerable to audit team?
  4. In your task, do you need to prepare report? Daily? Weekly? Monthly? Quarterly? Yearly?
  5. Do you need to refer to previous report for confirmation? 
  6. Do you know where are the record to refer to? 
  7. Which file? 
  8. Anyone holds that file? 
  9. Is the file missing? 
  10. Can you find the file?

The above are some of the questions for you to ask yourself from time to time in the course of performing your work. Should your answer is yes to some of the questions, it is time to look for records.

It is also time for you to look into current practices of record keeping if the answer is yes and no for question number 5-10.

Records are the last thing one would be thinking in work operation. Most of the time, it is ignored, it is not given due attention. This is a lackluster attitude among employees and top management (most of the cases). It is only needed most when there is an audit in progress or any cases as a result of litigation or judicial inquiry. In most cases, records is "managed" just enough. No serious undertakings from person in charge for proper record keeping. Records manager or records officer is consulted when only there is problem, otherwise, they are not.

Hence, record keeping is seen and deemed as 'supportive" to current operation. This state of ignorance results in record keeping as not due all the time.

Think about it.....

What is your role as record professionals to change such perceptions and views?
What could you do to make change?
How are you going to recognize that records is the backbone of any organizational operation?
How are you going to tell your top management of the critical role of proper records keeping?

Most important of all, how can you change the current perception that proper record keeping is considered secondary while the fact that everybody needs records rather than records need them. 

Thursday, November 5, 2015

My organization is jammed....

Dear all...

One fine day, i received an email. Somebody who happened to be my former student sent me an email. The email stated like this;

Stacks of Veterans Affairs claim folders overtake a regional office in Winston-Salem, N.C. These photos were included in a 2012 report from the Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General. (Somewhere in USA not in Malaysia)

"Dear sir, How are you? I am now working with one academic institution at the northern state in Peninsular Malaysia. I am now in charge of the records in this organization. However though, I have an uphill task of managing all those paper records. Space is scarce and I have nowhere to store the records. Could you please shed some opinion on how I could go about it? Can I just dispose off all records so that I can save some space for other records? Or is there any modern equipment to be installed so that the current space can accommodate more? Please advise, thanks".....

I read through with amusement. I recalled last time when I was called for a talk by the same organization, and had a fruitful discussion with a few top persons in that organization, the problems had been resolved. During which I believe, at that time, my former student who sent me this email has yet worked there. The incident was much earlier then.

When receiving this email, now I realize that, those compounding problems are far from solved. It surprises me a bit. I could just imagine how much backlogs now then before. Surely they are struggling to keep all records. When asked previously, they said they do not have budget to have new space built for it or allocate for and even to engage offsite storage providers.

That is the problem now and before. I look at it as a disaster... a record disaster. Everything is jammed. Backlogs are there, and organization cannot operate efficiently and effectively. Everything seem to be slowing down...I mean the operation of organization. Access and reference is difficult to be done. I could just imagine, stack of records are everywhere in that organization. I think I read somewhere of similar problems somewhere. if I am not mistaken there is an interesting article named "MY ORGANIZATION IS JAMMED.....".

Hence, after sometime, and after giving some thoughts, I managed to reply the email. I said to him;

"In your situation, which I do really understand that it has been for sometime, and you are employed to deal and manage it. I understand your constrains. The space is there, it is full now. If you installed moving rack, similar problem will occur in near future. It is just temporary. What you can do now is....get your top management certain budget. It must be done, otherwise, the problems will still be there and haunting you. It is like a ghost....a nightmare to you, especially when you are tasked and entrusted to deal with it. You can dispose off the records after appraisal process, and prior to disposal, you could do digitization. All the records must be digitized. Once done, dispose off all records necessarily as well as preserve records deemed of having continuing value...I can guide on that.

When doing digitization, be careful, it is not mere have to prepare for the digitized materials to be stored digitally and that it could be accessed, referred to later. With that, you need some investment; peripherals, and software. You can use locally developed software by one local company, their software has received endorsement from the National Archive of Malaysia, and compliance with the functional requirement of electronic records management and MS2223 Part 1&2 as well as ISO 16175 and worry about it. Their software are also used in more than 31 government agencies as for now with more than 20,000 users in the Federal Government of Malaysia (as far as I am concerned).....for your information, I also use their software for teaching and learning purposes at my ERMS student are exposed to this electronic records management software when I teach them electronic records management subject...."

That is my answer to him. I gave him a contact number to that company so that he can make arrangement with them.

Soon after, I received a reply email from him; "Thank you sir....I am considering to use the software and to do digitization to the records at my holdings....please advise me on that later. I will keep in touch with you sir"

I believe my answer is such a relieve to him now. I hope his backlogs will soon disappear and the 'records disaster' will be gone. That is records.....if we ignore them now, later it will haunt us all. It must be managed right from the very beginning.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Jenayah siber dan kecurian maklumat dan rekod secara maya...BERNAMA Isnin 2 November



Membendung Kecurian Rekod Elektronik

Oleh Mohd Hisham Abdul Rafar

KUALA LUMPUR, 26 Okt (Bernama) -- Melindungi data dalam talian daripada sebarang ancaman keselamatan adalah satu tugas mencabar bagi kebanyakan organisasi, namun golongan pakar berpendapat bahawa pengurusan rekod dan maklumat yang efisyen boleh mencegah serta membendung kecurian rekod dan maklumat elektronik.

Sesebuah organisasi tidak boleh memandang remeh terhadap isu keselamatan siber, malah sepatutnya diperlengkap dengan pelan tindakan bencana yang merangkumi polisi keselamatan rekod elektronik bagi membendung berlakunya kecurian rekod, kata Dekan Fakulti Pengurusan Maklumat Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) Kampus Puncak Perdana, Prof Madya Dr Mohd Sazili Shahibi.

"Organisasi perlu membuat risikan awal terhadap ancaman-ancaman penjenayah siber dan menyediakan satu pelan tindakan efektif untuk melindungi data dan rekod elektronik. Kepakaran mereka yang mahir dalam teknologi maklumat amat diperlukan," katanya kepada Bernama.

Kepakaran profesional teknologi maklumat (IT) perlu bukan sahaja untuk melindungi rekod dan maklumat elektronik malah mereka mempunyai kesedaran dan kebertanggungjawaban yang tinggi mengenai keperluan melindungi rekod-rekod dan maklumat berkenaan.

Mengulas lanjut, beliau berkata pada masa kini, hampir semua organisasi banyak bergantung kepada maklumat secara elektronik, justeru cabaran menguruskannya adalah berbeza daripada cara konvensional yang digunakan pada masa lalu.


Pensyarah kanan fakulti sama, Alwi Mohd Yunus berkata sebarang kebocoran maklumat atau kecurian data boleh memberi kesan buruk kepada mana-mana syarikat, organisasi malah negara.

"Ia boleh menyebabkan berlakunya peras ugut dan pemerasan kewangan, kehilangan aset, penghinaan terbuka dan merosakkan kredibiliti," kata beliau dan menambah kata bahawa penjagaan rekod sulit adalah kritikal bagi mengelakkan berlakunya penipuan dan kecurian identiti atau maklumat.

Beliau berkata ancaman keselamatan siber boleh ditangani melalui peningkatan sistem kawalan akses fizikal dan logikal serta pengawasan yang berterusan.

Menurut seorang lagi pensyarah kanan di fakulti sama, Dr Azman Mat Isa, satu daripada cabaran terbesar yang dihadapi organisasi adalah memastikan tidak berlaku pertindihan rekod-rekod dalam talian.

"Hakikatnya, pemalsuan dokumen atau rekod elektronik boleh dilakukan oleh pakar teknologi maklumat dengan menggunakan teknologi sofistikated. Justeru, keadaan ini memberi cabaran hebat dalam menentukan ketulenannya," katanya kepada Bernama.

Nombor fail sahaja, kata beliau tidak memberi jaminan ketulenan sesuatu rekod memandangkan kecanggihan perisian dan perkakasan teknologi maklumat hari ini mampu menghasilkan dokumen yang sama dengan dokumen asli.

Namun, ketulenan dokumen atau rekod elektronik sama ada dalam talian dan perisian elektronik boleh dipastikan melalui metadata iaitu dengan menilai data yang tersirat di sebalik dokumen atau rekod elektronik.

"Metadata meliputi nama orang yang menghasilkan atau komputer yang digunakan, tarikh dan masa dokumen atau rekod berkenaan dihasilkan. Data ini dicerap secara automatik oleh sistem komputer," jelas beliau.


Sementara itu, Mohd Sazili juga mengingatkan bahawa organisasi-organisasi perlu mengamalkan aspek-aspek pengurusan rekod dan maklumat sebenar, kerana akses terhadap rekod-rekod elektronik tidak boleh diberi sewenang-wenangnya kepada semua petugas.

Tegas beliau, kecurian rekod dan maklumat elektronik boleh berlaku bukan sahaja daripada tindakan sabotaj pihak luar, sebaliknya berpunca daripada pihak dalaman organisasi sendiri.

"Sepatutnya hanya individu-individu tertentu sahaja yang diberikan akses penuh terhadap rekod-rekod elektronik," kata beliau.

Mohd Sazili menasihatkan pihak organisasi agar selalu membuat penilaian risiko bagi rekod-rekod elektronik dari semasa ke semasa sebagai langkah persediaan menghadapi sebarang ancaman elektronik.

"Kita perlu ingat bahawa risiko terhadap rekod elektronik ini sentiasa berubah-ubah mengikut keadaan semasa.

Pada 2 Okt lepas, Menteri di Jabatan Perdana Menteri Nancy Shukri dilaporkan berkata bahawa kerajaan sedang menimbang untuk memperketatkan lagi undang-undang siber sedia ada berikutan terdapatnya tindakan-tindakan membabitkan jenayah siber yang menjadi-jadi ketika ini sehingga boleh menjejaskan keselamatan negara.


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