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Smart phones, tablets, personal digital assistants and other portable computing devices provide convenience and flexibility. When used to store or transmit government data, however, they also create data practice issues. These issues are increased when government data is stored on or transmitted to or from devices owned personally by public officials or employees. The risk that “not public” data may be improperly disclosed is increased, and the devices also create record retention and record administration issues. As a result, we recommend that government data not be stored on or transmitted to or from any personally-owned portable computing devices. Additionally, individual entity policies may place conditions or restrictions on the use of personal devices for work purposes, or prohibit such use entirely.

Information on government data requirements is available from the Minnesota Department of Administration’s Data Practices Office (DPO) at:

The State’s Minnesota IT Services has also issued a set of security standards and policies that are available at:


Date this Avoiding Pitfall was most recently published: 4/12/2019

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