In today’s generation, website archiving is extremely important. Whether you are a public sector entity or a finance-based organization, you are legally obliged to do so. You have to maintain accurate records of all your website data.
On the contrary, even if you are not bound legally, you at least need to protect your name against false claims and even intellectual property theft of website content. And even in cases when the company launches a new website, long term preservation of historical data is clinical for an organization, that again calls for appropriate website archival.
Apart from this, there’s a list of other reasons why you must already start considering website archival. But before you learn more about archiving, you must be aware of what is not archiving. A CMS Backup is not an archive. Yes, and whoever told you it is, don’t trust them. Here’s why:
- Specific searches
A website archive is an archive in its truest sense because of its abilities. Out of the long list, one of the star advantages of an archive is to find a specific page, post or even phrase from thousands of archived pages. Thus, during a legal crisis when litigation is needed, this feature comes in handy. However, a CMS backup is not equipped with the needed coding for full-text searches.
- Digital signatures
Like discussed, one of the primary reasons why archiving is important is because it acts as a digital evidence to be defensible in court. It is not because it is an archive that makes it admissible, it is because it has a digital signature, which proves it is a document that has not been tampered and is authentic. On the other hand, a CMS Backup does not consist of a digital signature.
What is the whole point of having a backup when you can’t access the data in your wee hours? And well, a crisis doesn’t come knocking at your doors. The real test of a website archive is the easy accessibility of the data by all the departments of your firm. Things need to be quick, easy and immediate but with CMS Backup, it’s quite the contrary.
Higher alikeness of the generated data can make it easier for you to locate the required matter. Archives are a carbon copy or a live replay of the original website thus enabling users to quickly find the lost content from the website and redevelop it without damage. On the contrary, with a CMS Backup, there is no facilitated search and plus, it might cost you hours to find what you need.
Like digital signatures, metadata associated with any website comes in handy in cases of litigation, and legal crisis. In simple words, metadata needs to be associated with your web archives. For the record, this is missing in CMS Backups as they do not allow legal teams to easily export a record with all the metadata.
We discussed some requirements like digital signatures and metadata which are not fulfilled by a CMS Backup. There are few additional requirements for public and finance industries with specific recordkeeping that a CMS does not satisfy. For instance, a website’s records will not be audited by simply submitting a CMS Backup record.
After all the cited limitations, I am sure you would not want a CMS backup for your website. Plus, this must-have cleared the air about how a CMS backup is NOT a replacement for an archive. Now, let me quickly stroll you through the basics of website archiving.
Website archiving is a process and there are multiple ways to accomplish it. For instance, if there is just one webpage you wish to save, you can simply save it in your hard drive. Next, there are various free tools on the internet equipped with archiving. You must have heard of the Wayback Machine? That too can be used for the same purpose. It not only allows you to look at websites the way they looked years ago but also archive them. However, in the past few years, it has proved to be unreliable to many users along with its automation limitations.
It’s time for automation!
Your best bet in replacement of Wayback machine is a nifty tool called Stillio. The primary feature of Stillio is to automatically capture screenshots at regular intervals at your specified time. It comes in handy for web archiving as it automates your website screenshots, manages your site history and saves you a lot of time. All you need to do is set the URLs and forget about the rest. Stillio takes care of everything else!