Elections and Government Services Administrative Rules of Montana Business Services Notary and Certification Records and Information Management

June 28, 2011

CONTACT INFORMATION: Harper Lawson, (406) 444-5359

McCulloch Unveils Online Guide for Restoring Documents After Flood sos.mt.gov/Records/Recovery

HELENA – Have recent floods damaged your old photographs, personal records, or other important documents?

Secretary of State Linda McCulloch today unveiled Records Recovery, a new online resource to help Montana’s businesses, homeowners, and government agencies protect, restore, and repair documents before and after a disaster emergency.

“The most important thing you can do is to act quickly,” McCulloch said. “Speed is essential in preventing mold and water damage.”

McCulloch outlined the following steps as a basic guide for records and information recovery:

1) Plan – Creating and maintaining a comprehensive contingency plan is key.

2) Backup – Essential records should be backed-up, off-site, and readily available.

3) Prepare – Take pictures before beginning recovery; Obtain the appropriate approvals.

4) Pack & Track – Transfer records out of danger; Record type and extent of damage.

5) Respond –Recover essential records first; Freeze wet records within 48 hours.

“As floods continue to threaten Montana, it is important to have a contingency plan in place,” McCulloch said. “Planning ahead shortens response time and helps to better protect records in the future.”

The Montana Secretary of State, as provided in MCA 2-6-203, is charged with managing the State Records Center and safeguarding essential public records. Records Recovery can be accessed on the Secretary of State’s web site using the direct link: sos.mt.gov/Records/Recovery.