Welcome to this week’s Tip of the Hat!
The trees outside the LDH office are now covered in leaves, the tulips and daffodils are blooming, and the grass has started growing again. All of which means one thing –
allergy season Spring Cleaning Season! Or, as we at LDH like to call it, #dataspringcleaning season.
We covered the basics of #dataspringcleaning in a previous newsletter; however, determining if your data sparks joy might be a challenge this year given the state of current affairs. For this year’s #dataspringcleaning season, here’s a short cleaning list for your newly minted home office to help you in your data cleaning efforts.
Shred! If you don’t have a shredder at home, you have a couple of options:
- Store documents for shredding at the office in a secured place in your home away from housemates.
- Buy a shredder for your home. Look for a shredder that can shred at or above Level P-4. Having a shredder at home not only helps you protect patron privacy but also your privacy now that you have a convenient way to shred your personal documents and files.
Shredded paper should not go into your recycling bin – it’s most likely that your recycling center cannot accept shredded paper. In King County (where LDH is located) residents are instructed to use shredded paper for composting. You can also take a few handfuls of shredded paper to top off any garbage cans before closing up the garbage bag when you take the garbage out. Check with your local solid waste and recycling departments in your local area for more guidance about disposing of shredded paper.
- Store patron data on work storage or equipment when necessary. Do not use personal hard drives, flash drives, or other personal storage devices to store patron data.
- Do a quick data inventory of any personal cloud storage services you use, such as Google Drive or Evernote.
- What patron data do you have stored in those services?
- Can you migrate that data to work storage?
- What data do you need to keep, and what data can be deleted?
- If you have your work computer at home, now would also be a good time to do a data inventory of what’s stored on the local drive.
- Remember, deleting a file doesn’t mean that the file is deleted! There are many programs available to help you permanently delete files.
- If you do end up having to retire a physical disk or drive that held patron data, what tools do you have in your home toolbox? You most likely have a hammer, but you can also get creative depending on what’s available… we’ve mentioned power drills before, but perhaps you might want to try out the nail gun. Remember – safety first!
#dataspringcleaning at home is a good way to spend the time between meetings or to begin or end your workdays at home. A little bit of cleaning each day adds up to help protect patron privacy 🙂 Happy cleaning!