What Does Data Purging Mean?
Data purging is the process of permanently removing obsolete data from a specific storage location when it is no longer required.
Common criteria for data purges include the advanced age of the data or the type of data in question. When a copy of the purged data is saved in another storage location, the copy is referred to as an archive.
The purging process allows an administrator to permanently remove data from its primary storage location, yet still retrieve and restore the data from the archive copy should there ever be a need. In contrast, the delete process also removes data permanently from a storage location, but doesn’t keep a backup.
In enterprise IT, the compound term purging and archiving is used to describe the removal of large amounts of data, while the term delete is used to refer to the permanent removal of small, insignificant amounts of data. In this context, the term deletion is often associated with data quality and data hygiene, whereas the term purging is associated with freeing up storage space for other uses.
Strategies for data purging are often based on specific industry and legal requirements. When carried out automatically through business rules, purging policies can help an organization run more efficiently and reduce the total cost of data storage both on-premises and in the cloud.