Many local governments keep databases that do not comply with requirements

Toomas Mattson | 2/21/2017 | 11:00 AM

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TALLINN, 21 February 2017 – The overview prepared by the National Audit Office reveals that local governments keep hundreds of databases the majority of which have not passed even the most primary compliance inspections.

The National Audit Office found that local governments collect data in at least 925 databases only 175 of which have passed the compulsory primary inspection in the database of the administration system for the state information system (RIHA). Although the registration of databases has been compulsory for years, almost half of all local governments have not registered a single database in RIHA. According to Riigi Teataja, there are only 281 procedures or database statutes that set out which data to collect and how it should be done. Neither do cities, towns and municipalities take advantage of the technical possibilities for secure data exchange via the X-road.

According to RIHA, only 54 databases of local governments have been interfaced with the X-road. Data exchange between some databases is a problem simply because they are kept on paper or using office software. The share of such databases among the databases identified by the National Audit Office is at least 9%.

There are several reasons why cities, towns and municipalities do not register their databases. One of the problems, for example, is that local governments do not acknowledge that they create a database when they start collecting data and are not aware of the requirements associated with this. The definitions and principles concerning databases are still not clear enough. For example, can a local government decide on the functions for the performance of which the database may be used? Also, the requirements of local governments have not always been considered by the state upon the development of central registers.

It is important to have an overview of the data collected about people and to ensure that such data is prudently kept. It is also important to ensure that people will not have to submit the same data several times in order to receive public services. The databases of local governments should be streamlined in order to reduce the security risks related to information systems and develop e-services.

During the preparation of the overview, the National Audit Office also checked what kind of databases local governments keep and whether they comply with requirements, what the practice of registering databases is like and whether the state exercises supervision of the databases of local governments.

Toomas Mattson
Communication Manager of the National Audit Office
+372 640 0777
+372 513 4900
toomas.mattson@riigikontroll.ee
press@riigikontroll.ee
www.riigikontroll.ee
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  • Posted: 2/21/2017 11:00 AM
  • Last Update: 2/21/2017 10:59 AM
  • Last Review: 2/21/2017 10:59 AM

The National Audit Office found that local governments collect data in at least 925 databases only 175 of which have passed the compulsory primary inspection in the database of the administration system for the state information system (RIHA).

Corbis/Scanpix Baltics

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