Secure Data for the Future: A Risk Assessment

  • Bendik Bryde Piql
  • Roberto Gonzalez Piql


The guarantee of secure and authentic future access to any digital data is a big worry to those who work with data now and those who are responsible to keep it accessible for the future. There are a wide range of threats to digital data that these people should need to take into consideration. The project PreservIA had the goal to assess the risks of using analogue 35mm film to store and preserve digital information and define its strengths and weaknesses for long-term secure preservation of all kinds of digital data.

The research project was examining the application of the Piql technology to ensure the security, integrity and authenticity of the information stored on a unique storage medium. PiqlFilm has been designed for a life span of 500 years or more and the research tries to assess how well this solution could maintain the authenticity and availability of the information, independently of internal and external changes in the surrounding environment over time.

The research project has been designed using a scenario-based approach and the morphological method of scenario development is used to define a set of scenarios covering the risks to the service.

The scenario classes used were accident, technical error, natural disaster, crime, sabotage, espionage, terrorism, armed conflict and nuclear war. A scenario template has been included for the purpose of describing current and future scenarios. The final scenario analysis identified potential vulnerabilities.

The paper shows briefly how Piql Preservation Services holistic preservation approach perform the work, defines a methodology to select the scenarios for the assessment and then studies the vulnerabilities and security challenges of the solution on those scenarios. The project also includes a comparison of other existing storage media to evaluate their robustness to the addressed scenarios in relation to Piql technology.

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