Once released, digitized government data should remain permanently available, “findable” at a stable online location or through archives in perpetuity. Although portals and websites can be vehicles for accessing this data over the long term (see Provision 18), it is critical that the data’s permanent release and accessibility is defined so as to apply to the data itself, not just the means of access.
Provisions relating to permanence can also be expanded to relate to updates, changes or other alterations to the data. For best use by the public, these changes should be documented to include appropriate version-tracking and archiving over time. These provisions should build on the strengths of existing records management laws and procedures (see Provision 2).