Digital documents

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The digital documents of the Swiss Confederation held in the Federal Archives are drawn primarily from records and process management systems and databases. The Federal Archives ensure their authenticity, integrity and long-term usability, so that the actions of government remain transparent in the digital age.  

The Federal Archives’ standardised archiving process extends from pre-archiving advisory services through to dissemination. It covers both organisational and technical aspects. In digital archiving, context information (metadata) is as important as the content of the documents themselves. During acquisition, it is decoupled from its specific IT environments (applications, database and operating systems, hardware) and archived in archivable formats. Where necessary to preserve readability, it is also converted into new formats (migration process). Detailed information about submitting documents to the Federal Archives – especially from relational databases – can be found under submitting digital documents, where you can also find a list of archivable file formats. The principles under which the Federal Archives carry out digital archiving are set out in the digital archiving policy (PDF, 618 kB, 04.01.2011).

Archiving for third parties

On request, the Federal Archives also preserve and archive digital data from cantons, municipalities and institutions with a public law mandate. For further information see archiving for third parties.

Archiving special types of data

The Federal Archives work with other institutions to develop solutions for archiving special types of data, such as geodata and websites. Information about ongoing projects can be found under geodata.

How does the archiving of digital documents actually work in the Federal Archives?

Last modification 03.01.2024

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Swiss Federal Archives

Archivstrasse 24
3003 Bern

+41 58 462 89 89


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