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Document Retention, Transmission & Destruction Policy

Document Retention, Transmission & Destruction Policy

1.     Purpose

This Policy represents the policy of Corporate Investigation Services (CIS) with respect to the retention and destruction of documents and other records, both in hard copy and electronic media (which may merely be referred to as “documents” in this Policy). Purposes of the Policy include:

Retention, transmission and maintenance of documents necessary for the proper functioning of the organization as well as to comply with applicable legal requirements;

Destruction of documents which no longer need to be retained; and

Guidance for management, employees, agents and others with respect to their responsibilities concerning document retention and destruction.

2.     Responsibilities

2.1.       Chief Privacy Officer (CPO)

The Chief Privacy Officer (CPO) or designate is in charge of the administration of this Policy. The CPO’s responsibilities shall include supervising and coordinating the retention and destruction of documents pursuant to this Policy and particularly the Document Retention Schedule included below. The CPO shall also be responsible for documenting the actions taken to maintain and/or destroy CIS documents and retaining such documentation. The CPO may also modify the Document Retention Schedule from time to time as necessary to comply with law and/or to include additional or revised document categories as may be appropriate to reflect organizational policies and procedures. The CPO is also authorized to periodically review this Policy and Policy compliance. The CPO may also appoint one or more assistants to assist in carrying out the CPO’s responsibilities, with the CPO, however, retaining ultimate responsibility for administration of this Policy.

2.2.       Management, Employees, Agents an All Others

This policy relates to the responsibilities of all management, employees, agents and others with respect to maintaining and documenting the storage and destruction CIS’ documents. CIS employees shall be familiar with this policy, shall act in accordance therewith, and shall assist the CPO, as requested, in implementing it. Outsiders may include vendors or other service providers. Depending upon the sensitivity of the documents involved with the particular outsider relationship, CIS, through the CPO, shall share this policy with the outsider, requesting compliance. In particular instances, the CPO may require that the contract with the outsider specify the particular responsibilities of the outsider with respect to this Policy.

3.     Suspension of Document Destruction; Compliance

CIS becomes subject to a duty to preserve (or halt the destruction of) documents once litigation, an audit or an investigation is reasonably anticipated. Further, action will be taken upon whomever “knowingly alters, destroys, mutilates, conceals, covers up, falsifies, or makes a false entry in any record, document, or tangible object with the intent to impede, obstruct, or influence an investigation or proper administration of any matter. Therefore, if the CPO becomes aware that litigation, audit or an investigation has been instituted, or is reasonably anticipated or contemplated, the CPO shall immediately order a halt to all document destruction under this Policy, communicating the order to all affected in writing. Failure to comply with this Policy, including, particularly, disobeying any destruction halt order, could result in possible criminal sanctions. In addition, for staff, it could lead to disciplinary action including possible termination.

4.     Electronic Documents; Document Integrity

Documents in electronic format shall be maintained just as hard copy or paper documents are, in accordance with the Document Retention Schedule. Due to the fact that the integrity of electronic documents, whether with respect to the ease of alteration or deletion, or otherwise, may come into question, the CPO shall attempt to establish standards for document integrity, including guidelines for handling electronic files, backup procedures, archiving of documents, and regular checkups of the reliability of the system; provided, that such standards shall only be implemented to the extent that they are reasonably attainable considering the resources and other priorities of CIS.

5.     Emergency Planning

Documents shall be stored in a safe and accessible manner. Documents which are necessary for the continued operation of CIS in the case of an emergency shall be regularly duplicated or backed up and maintained in an off-site location as listed in the Business Continuity Plan.

6.     Document Creation and Generation

The CPO shall discuss with staff the ways in which documents are created or generated. With respect to each employee or organizational function, the CPO shall attempt to determine whether documents are created which can be easily segregated from others, so that, when it comes time to destroy (or retain) those documents, they can be easily culled from the others for disposition. For example, on an employee-by-employee basis, are e-mails and other documents of a significantly non-sensitive nature so that they might be deleted, even in the face of a litigation hold with respect to other, more sensitive, documents.