1.1 Explain the purpose of storing and retrieving required information
Storing information is a process where information is stored or kept within a store house. A storehouse includes places such as cabinets, HDD which is a hard disk drive, memory sticks or floppy disks depending on the kind of information that you are trying to store. Retrieving information is the process of regaining the information that has been stored when it is needed at relevant times within the future.
Within any business storing information or documents is a procedure that needs to be followed because there will be no faults with finding the documents or information again when they need to be retrieved. There are different ways to file different types of documents for example certain types of information have to be stored within fire proof cabinets and some have to be recorded on hard copies or soft copies electronically.
Depending on what kind of business is needing to store their information there will have to be different ways of storing them because of the type of information for example it could be confidential so they could not store it somewhere that the other workers will be able to get access to it. For example in a hospital the information has to be stored in a specific way so that only the people who are meant to be seeing them can see them or in a bank the information is confidential and cannot be stored somewhere that is not secure because if the customers bank details were to get out to a member of staff or to a member of the public there would be a lawsuit that could cause harm to the business. Businesses have to make sure that every employee in their company follow the data protection act with the information that they are given to store on a daily basis so that the business is a smooth running business.
The purpose of information retrieval is so that when a customer comes in and wants to see their information it will be on hand and easy to retrieve there and then, also if and inspector was to come into a business and ask to see some information that is not confidential and that has been stored recently the business would be able to bring it up within a couple of minutes if it is stored properly. Information that is not confidential can be retrieved for promotional offers, surveys, newsletters, monitoring and other research involving the business itself. Information may also be retrieved if there is a problem with insurance or something big involving the business so that it is all corrected.
Every business needs to store and retrieve information online or offline in order for the business to run smoothly. √
1.2- Describe different information systems and their main features Information systems are the collection of hardware and software and also data and procedures used by the people and organisations using the information storage and retrieval procedure. The information system has many jobs that make it important, some of these jobs include creating data, the collection of data, the processing of data, distributing data and retrieving data. These jobs are there for the information systems to make a business more efficient and effective. In the past there used to only be three different types of information systems which are the following: The transaction processing system- this system is used and is in charge of day to day business transactions. Different organisations have different types of transactions that take place on a daily basis. The main job of this processing system is the maintaining, adding, changing and the removal of various data. For example it places orders or businesses, it runs cheque deposits, placing orders, payroll systems, reservation systems, stock controls etc.
This system is a main system in every business and it is used by the frontline staff. The decision support systems- this system is manly used to help managers when they are trying to make a long term decision or a life changing choice for the business. In order for the system to work it had to use external and internal resources and analyse existing information in order to project the effects in the long term. The main tasks that this system is in charge of is helping with summary reports, forecast and graphs including many more. For example spreadsheets of the income coming into the business and logistics etc. The management information systems- this system helps a business with problem solving and also with decision making. This system is in the level of management which means that it is helping the business run smoothly with everything that it does, it is also in charge of running and monitoring the performance levels of the business, the efficiency levels, the data for accounting and other transactions, it also generates all the businesses reports on the above list, all the information that this system gives out has to be accurate and relevant to the task at hand A few other information systems have been added gradually in the past and they are systems such as:
Executive information system- this system is in charge of helping with the information flow of a business, the reporting and the data analysis of the business. Executives and senior managers use this type of system in order to predict the future of the business and the system gives them the external and the internal resources that they need to find out this information and also summary reports and forecasts so they know what they need to change if the future is predicted to be damaging to the business Data warehouse- this system is in charge of helping with the storage of any information electronically and also the analysis, retrieval, sharing and management of the data. Office automation- this system is in charge of helping to create, modify and put together all the information it is given in digital form. An office automation is a computer based information system that was developed to increase the efficiency of the office workers, administration assistants, managers, professionals, secretaries and anyone who is in use of a computer to store and retrieve any information
1.3 Explain the purpose of legal and organisational requirements for the security and confidentiality of information
When an organisation is going to store any information on their computer systems or in a hard copy they have to follow the procedures that have been set for them to follow. For example the security and confidentiality procedures need to be followed with every business, the information security and confidentiality is the process where the data that is stored is kept away from unauthorised access, disclosure, destruction and use or modification. This procedure in particular is applied for both physical and electronical data. Nearly every business stores confidential information about their employees, customers, the company’s status, products, surveys, finances and lots of other important information, so this is where the procedure applies so that none of the information is seen by unauthorised eyes.
If any of the information falls into the wrong hands it could lead to negative consequences such as legal actions for example if for work placement I was to go somewhere that all the information was to be kept from unauthorised people and I was in charge of not allowing anyone to know the information and not to speak about it outside of work placement, and I told a friend this information, the business could end up getting sued, I would be removed and the law would be involved including the business could go bankrupt. The procedure needs to also be followed when the passing of information to another individual or another organisation is taking place. The types of information that is to be kept confidential is usually things such as: Date of birth
Credit and debit card details
When these types of information are being passed to another individual they have to have the authority to see them and know them or to someone who the owner of the details have given consent to seeing the information and also as long as the confidentiality laws and regulations are still being followed.
1.4 Explain the purpose of confirming information to be stored and retrieved
Every business stores a lot of information, but before they can store the information that have to make sure that it is the right information because if they were to store the wrong information it would be of no use to them in the future when they need the information that they were meant to have stored instead. The information that is stored has to be kept up to date because if the information was to go out of date it would be a problem to the company, for example if the information was a telephone number and the business needs to get through to a certain person for an urgent reason they will not get in touch with them if it is the wrong telephone number.
This also applies for the retrieval of the information because if a customer was to come in and ask for their details or some information and it is not the right information they will not be happy and will not be able to gain what they had come into the business to gain. The purpose of confirming the information that is going to be stored or retrieved are to avoid the wrong information arising in the future, to prevent mistakes being stores and to avoid unnecessary costs and issues that arise through the wrong information being presented or even just being stored. If the wrong information is stored it can lead to outcomes that no business wants to happen. For example if the address of one of the businesses customers is out of date because the customer has moved house their confidential information will be sent out to a complete stranger and the stranger could end up clearing out the customers bank and the business could end up in court or even worse, bankrupt.
1.5 Describe ways of checking information for accuracy
If a business was to store any information that they receive and has not been checked for accuracy it could lead to serious outcomes for the business, every business has to check their information before storing. The information that every business needs to check before storing is details such as:
-For the business:
Employee and customer details
Alerts can be set on customer and employee information so that they can be contacted so that the information that is stored can be updated if necessary so that the business is not going to run into any problems in the future. Good software should be used when using a database to store information because it will be stored accurately and there will be no mistakes. Another way of keeping information up to date is by internal and external audits. √
1.6 Explain the purpose of checking information for accuracy
All businesses have to check the information that they are going to store to make sure that it is accurate. For example the money coming in and going out has to be correctly recorded or it will look like the company has made very little profit and it could affect the share prices of the business, the employees because the business may or may not be able to pay them and they will have to get rid of the staff that they cannot afford to pay and lender companies will not agree to lend the business any money to recover. The business’s financial status and values will be destroyed if the information that is stored is incorrect and they could lose most if not all of their customers. If the information is correct the executives of a business can plan ahead for the future and lay out goals and objectives to gain and they will also be able to plan for the short term also.
1.7 Explain the purpose of providing information to agreed format and timescales
When information is requested from a business it has to be in an agreed format and has to be provided on an agreed timescale. Every business has their own selected format for their documents that has to be dealt with. When the business is dealing with another business there will be an agreed format that all the information will need to be presented on, if there is not an agreed format provided, it will require a reformatting which will take up extra time that may be required for other tasks and it will bring a bad reputation to the business.
If the information is not provided in the correct format it can take time to reformat into a different format which prevents the business from keeping their timescales. If the information is not provided in the agreed timescale and is complete after the deadline the information will not be of any use because the time for the information has passed already or there will not be time to interrupt the information if it was required to do so. It will then not help with the smooth running of the organisation. The business will have to follow the policies and procedures and make sure that the information has to be provided on an agreed format. √
1.8 Describe the types of information that may be deleted
As a business is running it will continue to collect information, for example if the business has got a record of the customers or clients that it has it will have to keep updating the database because there will be new customers or clients coming on a daily basis and as the company grows and in the end will have old, unused data, irrelevant data, out-dated data etc. which will only take up unwanted storage space. Every business has a time in which the information that they have collected is kept for and how long it needs to be retained on the database. Once the businesses time for keeping information is up the unwanted information can be deleted or physical files can be destroyed following the security and confidentiality procedures. Deletion of electronic files and the shredding of physical files are the processes used to delete the unwanted information. When there is information being shared between partner companies or businesses arrangements have to be made as to how long the information will need to be retained on their database before they are needed to be deleted. When information is to be deleted it has to be deleted securely and accurately so that there are not detrimental effects or errors.
1.9 Describe problems that may occur with information systems and how to deal with them, when necessary
Every business needs to include the most important asset to a business and that is information system although there are many issues that can result in problems involving information systems. For example with electronic mail there is a high risk of being attacked by viruses or hackers, physical information can be damaged by floods or fires. Also confidentiality can be breached by people in the business who do not have the authority to access the information, and the lack of communication within the business could lead to the misuse of the information or even the wrong storage.
Computer viruses can infect any programs and information stored on the computer or the network. In order to prevent attacks from viruses or hackers there are programs that can be used such as proper security (antivirus) software and firewalls, with these programs the computer is being monitored at all times and fights against hackers and viruses that try to get access. Sharing information over the internet should be avoided if possible and if needed secure emails and communication procedures need to be followed. If an email from an unknown or suspicious source comes through to a business’s inbox they should delete them before opening them. Suspicious attachments also should never be opened because it could be a virus waiting to attack.
When downloading files from the internet, only trustworthy sources should be used, antivirus has to be kept up to date because once the time is up that you have for antivirus the computer in question is open to viruses. Important information within a computer should be pass-worded so that unauthoritive people do not have access to the information. In cases where the information is to be copied on to an external portable device it is best that the information is encrypt. No information should be shared with people who do not have the authority to know the information. Information should be backed up in case there happens to be a problem with the system, if there is a problem with the system the business will not have lost any valuable information. In the case of physical information, it is best to be stored in fire proof cabinets and safe places where there is no risk of danger. Information also has to be protected from corruption and access has to be controlled.