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Document management - well thought out


GDPR, tax legislation, product liability, HIPAA, SEC 17a-4, ... Organizations have to comply with complex data management requirements. The audit-proof storage of sensitive data is a central issue. For legally compliant data storage, companies must think their document management through to the end and must not rely solely on their DMS/ECM.

Archive storage for sensitive data from the DMS/ECM - legally compliant, future-proof, hardware-independent

Colloquially, the terms DMS/ECM, document storage, and archive are often used as synonyms. In detail, however, there are important differences. In an archive, data is stored which must be kept for a certain period of time - immutable, revision-proof, legally compliant. DMS/ECM systems are also used (among other tasks) for filing, but mainly for ongoing business activities.


Establishing a secure archive storage system "behind" the DMS/ECM makes sense from multiple perspectives, and in certain cases is a legal requirement. Rationale:

  • The audit-proof archive serves to comply with legal, industry-specific, and internal requirements (e.g. DSGVO, GoBD, SEC 17a-4, product liability).
  • For audits and as evidence in court, data must be stored in a verifiably immutable form. It is insufficient to simply not delete data from the DMS.
  • A modern archive system takes on additional tasks to ensure data integrity and protection, e.g. automatic integrity checks, encryption, WORM storage, and retention management at the storage level.
  • Companies save valuable potential of their DMS/ECM systems and primary storage by using a long-term archive. Archive data can be stored cost-effectively on secondary storage or in the cloud.


Organizations must be clear about the goals of their data management and ask the right questions when evaluating the appropriate solution:

  • Are compliance, data protection, and legal requirements met?
  • Is the archive solution scalable to cope with future data growth?
  • Is there a dependency on specific manufacturers or hardware?
  • Can the archive solution be integrated into the existing IT infrastructure?
  • Can data be easily migrated, e.g. when changing the DMS/ECM or storage infrastructure?


There is no lack of future-proof solutions today - the times of rigid hardware archive silos are over. The focus of modern archive solutions is on flexibility, independence, and efficiency. The Software-Defined Archiving approach is based on exactly these parameters. With this concept, a software solution provides the archive intelligence, not the storage hardware or the DMS/ECM. The archive middleware connects the applications (ECM, DMS, ERP, PACS, ...) and the storage infrastructure. As a central platform, the software takes care of data integrity, WORM storage, and retention management.


With the help of Software-Defined Archiving, companies can create a central archive which is hardware-independent and is based on the existing IT infrastructure. Because software solutions are much easier to adapt to new requirements than hardware appliances, they allow long-term compliance with existing and new requirements.


In summary, not deleting data from the DMS/ECM is not sufficient for compliance-compliant storage, as it does not guarantee data integrity or immutability. These tasks are performed by a long-term archive "behind" the DMS/ECM, whereby the Software-Defined Archiving approach represents a future-proof, flexible, and cost-effective solution.

Software-Defined Archiving Whitepaper

Software-Defined Archiving (SDA) offers companies the opportunity to react flexibly and on demand to their increased archiving requirements without being bound to storage manufacturers or hardware. Read the whitepaper to learn what Software-Defined Archiving means, how it differs from other archive storage approaches and whether the changeover is worthwhile for your archive as well.

Download the whitepaper
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