Computing & Information Services

Electronic Data Backup and Retention

This document summarizes the categories of electronic information managed and/or stored by Computing & Information Services (CIS).

ADMINISTRATIVE COMPUTING

Servers

Data that reside on Unix servers are backed up nightly.  Each week a complete backup set is moved to a secure secondary site.  One full backup set per month is retained for eighteen months.

Administrative data and web services that reside on Windows and Macintosh servers are backed up nightly.  Each week a complete backup set is moved to a secure secondary site and retained for a year.

Desktop and laptop computers used by administrative staff

Specific files on administrative staff computers are backed up continuously and stored encrypted in two locations on campus. Backup data for administrative staff are retained for a rolling window of one year.

ACADEMIC COMPUTING

Servers

Data that cannot be recreated from other systems are backed up nightly. Each week a complete backup set is moved to a secure secondary site and retained for one year.

Desktop and laptop computers

Specific files on faculty and academic staff computers are backed up continuously and stored encrypted in two locations on campus. Backup data for faculty and academic staff are retained for a rolling window of one year.

CIS does not systematically back up student computers.  However, CIS offers assistance to students to help them back up data to academic servers and devices such as removable hard drives.

Computers in departmental computing laboratories, classrooms, and IRCs

CIS does not back up these platforms.  Information left on IRC computers is preserved for two weeks and then erased.  Data placed on departmental lab computers and computers located in classrooms (for use with projectors) are not backed up by CIS.

CAMPUS-WIDE COMPUTING

Electronic mail

Reed email messages are backed up using Google Vault and are retained for one year.  Email files stored on users' computers may also be backed up to Reed's central backup servers and retained for a rolling window of one year.

Logs

Log files are retained for a minimum of five days.  Log retention durations for specific servers change periodically; a working list of log retention targets for central servers is maintained by CIS.

Computers in Shop

Data on computers being repaired, upgraded, or replaced may be backed up for short periods of time (2-6 weeks).