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When it comes to data retention practices, most companies are stuck in limbo, balancing competing needs between providing easy access to data for business and regulatory purposes and safeguarding data against leakage and breaches. The landscape 10 to 15 years ago was one of gross over-retention, with many practicing a blanket “save everything” approach. That landscape has begun to shift, as the risks associated with data security and data privacy have become paramount for many companies. While money, resources and technology can be directed to “protecting” confidential information from data breaches and data intrusions, the daunting reality is that if a company is retaining sensitive information, including personal information of employees and customers, the most effective protection is to ensure that such sensitive information is deleted when it no longer needed, or is deleted or removed from areas within the organization that do not have adequate protections in place. In sum, data privacy and data security are just one aspect of an effective information governance program.

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