January 27, 2022

NARA: National Archives Issues Guidance for Managing Billions of Federal Emails

From the National Records and Archives Administration:

The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) has issued guidance for Federal agencies on a simplified approach to managing email. NARA Bulletin 2013-02: Guidance on a New Approach to Managing Email Records introduces a new approach to managing the billions of email messages that are sent or received in Federal agencies. The approach is called “Capstone.”


The Bulletin is a culmination of two years of research with input from Federal agencies. It is designed to preserve permanently valuable email and provide a pathway to dispose of temporary email. It allows agencies to manage email without having to use “print and file” or “click and drag” methods for each email message.

Agencies adopting Capstone will be able to manage email at the account level. They will need to identify officials whose email is likely to contain permanently valuable information and manage their accounts. The remaining email accounts can be managed as temporary records and preserved for as long as the agency needs for business operations.

Read the Full Text of the NARA Guidance (NARA Bulletin 2013-02)

See Also: Capstone Bulletin Issued (via NARA’s Records Express Blog)
Info about workshops (in College Park and virtual) to learn more about guidance.

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.