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  Preservation Procedure Policy: Define Bit preservation
Related Guidance Policy
Bit preservation
Definition/ Description The organisation should define its understanding of bit preservation and the relation to functional preservation. This bit preservation definition may include topics such as bit integrity measures, different storage locations, regularity of checks, costs, safety levels etc.
Why A clear definition of the organisation’s understanding of the extent of bit preservation ensures that all relevant activities are accounted for. This should not be restricted to a reference to technical information about the storage capacities, but should embrace issues such as bit preservation level, error correction procedures, disaster recovery procedures etc.
Risks Not defining the organisation’s understanding of the extent of bit preservation may endanger the digital material as procedures and responsibilities are unclear.
Life cycle stage Preservation Planning, Curate and Preserve
Stakeholder Management:  defining bit preservation should be a policy action.
Depositor:  needs to know that bit preservation and safety measures are performed properly
Regulator:  concerned with the safety measures in bit preservation

Cross Reference Functional preservation
Access policies, related to the availability of the material, accessible and usable
Examples The Royal Library, Denmark: ”Bit preservation consists of secure storage of the physical bit sequence, here to be understood as storage in systems with well-established risks, as well as control of integrity and error correction.” Source:,
Control Policy The control policies that reflect what bit preservation means in practice in the organisation will be generated though decisions made in other parts of this section.
Questions to foster discussions
  • Has your organisation defined which activities will encompass bit preservation for the collection (s)?
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