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A collection of records often held for official reasons or because of the status, role, or value of the records. By extension, an archive also is often the physical or logical space independent of a production environment where records are held, protected from loss, alteration, and deterioration so that they may be retrieved in the future, for example, to be used as trustworthy evidence.
The archiving process must retain the meaning of the data and the data within the archive must be searchable and recoverable. For archived electronic records to remain accessible and understandable over time, they may need to undergo some preservation actions over their life time.
Publication Source: GAMP® Good Practice Guide: Electronic Data Archiving
Publication Date: 2007
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