School of Computer and Information Science, Edith Cowan University, Perth, Western Australia
Records management practices are mandatory in many business and government operations. Records management is a mature discipline with extensive body of knowledge, professional associations and clearly defined Australian and international standards. Records systems encompass the hardware, software and people necessary for operation and include records generated by and for the system. The Australian legal system has clearly defined standards for admissible evidence in the Evidence Act. Relevant records may require substantial preparation for submission and yet be inadmissible in legal proceedings. The records and system may be challenged in both theoretical and practical senses and appropriate practices and associated records are needed. These records may be expensive to acquire, process and store in suitable format and retaining the original data may be necessary. Applying records from a system to problems outside of the initial system requirements and design may expose the system to attack by showing that it fails to meet good practice. Further, validation of the system may demand suitable records from every stage of the system lifecycle including theoretical and operational basis.