What is information governance and how does it differ from data governance?

  • The terms ‘data’ and ‘information’ are often used interchangeably however they are not the same.
  • Information governance provides a strategic framework for organisations seeking to control data and information.
  • To derive value from information, companies need to invest in technology and systems that can be used to gain a competitive advantage and deliver benefits directly to the bottom line.

Data

As information governance and data governance becomes increasingly important for organisations seeking to control and secure information, it is important to understand what each one does and achieves.

What exactly is their purpose, and how do they differ from one another?

Information governance is a fundamental part of good corporate governance. Its mission is to maximise the value of information while minimising the costs and risks of holding it. Data governance is a key subset of this model. It aims to control information at the data level, ensuring the maintenance of accurate and high-quality data through the implementation of appropriate systems and processes.

This article looks at the roles information governance and data governance play within an organisation and how they are interlinked.

Data and information

While the terms ‘data’ and ‘information’ are often used interchangeably, they are not the same. Data consists of bits and bytes — a collection 0s and 1s which are processed by computer systems. Information comes from data, after the data has been organised, analysed and presented in a context where it can be used. Traditionally, the concept of information has been understood as ‘the act of informing’, usually in the context of conveying knowledge. In other words, information is data with context.

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