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Floppy disks still used by some U.S. government agencies

Categories: Community, Science & Technology

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Some U.S. government agencies are still using floppy disks. (iStock)

To most people, the floppy disk means save. But for some United States government agencies, it still means store.

According to a New York Times report, the Federal Register -- the official journal of the U.S. government -- receives some of its information for publication on the ubiquitous 3.5-inch device and its seemingly archaic successor, the CD-ROM.

As it turns out, legal and security requirements are outdated at some government agencies, compelling the Federal Register to work like it is 1995. 

Some agencies scan documents on to a computer and save them on antiquated floppy disks that are couriered to the register. 

The register still requires agencies to submit documents in hard copy with original signatures or create a digital signature using a secured email system, Amy P. Bunk, the agency's director of legal affairs and policy, told the New York Times.

But the register will not accept data on flash drives and SD cards. 

Bunk says the secured email system is expensive and some agencies have yet to upgrade to it.

A group representing government contractors says the use of outdated technology and the glitch-ridden rollout of the HealthCare.gov website are examples of a government behind the private sector in digital modernization. 

It also says the outdated technology is hampering collaboration between the government and the private sector. 

Do you still hang onto outdated technology? What gadgets from the past do you use? 

Tags: Data, Federal Register, Floppies, Floppy Disks, Government, Information, Outdated, Save, Technology, United States

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