FAQs about the Digital Archiving Program

1. Who is involved with the Digital Archiving Program (DAP)?

The DAP team in the Department of Housing and Public Works is leading the program with strong input from Queensland State Archives (QSA) as the key customer. A number of agencies participated in the procurement process, or are represented on the DAP Board, or both.

The lead contractor is Gaia Resources. Gaia Resources will work with organisations with archival management process knowledge, software development and infrastructure and hosting capability.

2. How will the program impact my agency?

Implementing archival management and control is designed to cater to both physical records and future transfers of digital records. The main impact on your agency is the creation of a new, secure online portal called ArchivesGateway. You will use ArchivesGateway to:

  • search for your records held at QSA
  • request temporary loan of files via the file issue service
  • propose new transfers of physical records to QSA
  • manage ArchivesGateway use roles, permissions and access delegations.

In addition to ArchivesGateway, there will be a new public interface (still known as ArchivesSearch) which will offer better and more flexible search options.

To receive QSA and DAP communications and stay up to date on the project, sign up for the QSA Government Services mailing list.

3. How long will it take to implement?

The DAP will work with Gaia Resources (as the prime Supplier) and their partners to deliver the end-to-end digital archiving service in approximately 3 years. The roadmap is below.

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Tranche 1: July 2018 to May/June 2020


  • Service and solution design for the Archival Management and Control (AMC) and the Access, Search and Discovery (ASD).
  • AMC and ASD build and existing AMC migration.
  • Iterative testing of the AMC with ASD solution components.
  • AMC and ASD go live May 2020.

Outcomes of this Tranche:

  • New AMC built, tested and accepted.
  • Migration completed from existing archival management system with new AMC live for existing collection.
  • ASD built, tested and accepted with new public and agency search interfaces live for existing collection).
  • Knowledge transfer and training for AMC/ASD users completed.
  • AMC with ASD service support and maintenance delivered as per contact.

Tanche 2: Likely to be May/June 2020 to October/November 2021

  • AMC and ASD business as usual for QSA, agencies and public.
  • Digital Preservation and Storage solution (DPS) design.
  • DPS build and test with QSA and early adopter digital transfers.
  • Knowledge transfer and training for DPS users completed.
  • DPS/full as a service go live yet to be determined, followed by DAP closure.

Outcomes include:

  • AMC and ASD live for physical and digital records.
  • New DPS live for digital ingests.
  • DPS service support and maintenance operational.
  • Transition to QSA BAU complete.
  • Service delivery contract management operational.

4. What is the current status of the DAP?

As at November 2019, DAP is on track to deliver as per the roadmap.  We completed Archival Management and Control (AMC) with Access, Search and Discovery (ASD) service design in January 2019. We started the AMC with ASD build stage in February 2019 and is well underway.

The AMC with ASD build stage involves:

  • establishing the infrastructure for the whole of the digital archiving service
  • configuring software to support QSA business requirements identified in the service design stage
  • planing and executing migration from QSA’s current archival management system to the new AMC solution
  • iteratively testing the AMC system components.

We're delivering the AMC with ASD build stage in agile sprints, with strong involvement from QSA subject matter experts.

Sign up for the QSA Government services mailing list to stay up to date on the project. 

5. Are my agency's records safe and secure?

Yes. We’re using secure-by-design principles to deliver digital archiving services. In line with Queensland Government policy, it is a cloud-based service hosted within secure, resilient and redundant AWS infrastructure wholly within Australia.

To keep your digital records and metadata safe and secure:

  • the supplier and AWS are ISO 27001 accredited with use of AWS certified ‘protected status’ (IRAP) services
  • the network is separated via virtual private cloud with a dedicated virtual private network connection between QSA and AWS using the Queensland Government Network
  • records and data are encrypted in transit and sensitive records and data are encrypted at rest
  • open to public and closed to public record metadata is separated using a public and private domain
  • records and data are hosted in Australia (Sydney)
  • multi-factor authentication (MFA) is used for agencies to access ArchivesGateway
  • ArchivesGateway access is limited to the minimum amount of data required to successfully execute a query
  • ArchivesGateway access is restricted by user roles that determine what data, functions, records and metadata a user can access.

We’ll also:

  • complete penetration testing while implementing AMC with ASD, and regularly afterwards, to identify vulnerabilities and categorise, prioritise and mitigate them
  • use audit logs for all transactions and events
  • use security event logs (data breaches, intrusion detection)
  • use AWS’s CloudFront for denial of service blocking
  • implement business continuity and disaster recovery provisions to protect against data loss or corruption.

Email the DAP team at DAPInternal@hpw.qld.gov.au if you require additional information on security approaches and controls.

6. When will agencies be able to transfer born digital, permanent value records?

Pending the commencment of the DPS implementation, the first early adopter transfers are likely to occur from mid 2021. More communication on early adopter transfers is planned for late 2020, including with those agencies that have already indicated interest in participating.

Other agencies will be able to transfer born digital, permanent value records once DPS is business-as-usual from mid to late 2021.

7. Why is the archival management component being delivered first?

Expert advice received during the market engagement and procurement process indicated that without the foundation capability of archival management and control, we can’t manage and control the digital preservation capability, integration and automated workflows. We need the system to manage records first.

The DAP Board, as the most senior governance authority for the program, considered this market advice and endorsed implementing the archival management and control first to reduce project risk and complexity, and to give the program a higher chance of success.