Security for your electronic publications

Zeros and ones emanating from an open safe door.

We save your digital deposits in a resilient and secure environment.

The Joint Undertaking on Security (PDF format, 1 MB) describes how digital legal deposit content will be held securely. This was agreed between the legal deposit libraries and the Joint Committee on Legal Deposit.

Storage and security

Security is ensured within a shared technical infrastructure. This is maintained in a secure environment, with network links protected by firewalls and virus checking systems, and with no public internet access.

Storage is provided at four nodes:

  • The British Library, Boston Spa
  • The British Library, London
  • The National Library of Scotland, Edinburgh
  • The National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth

Each node stores a full copy of all the materials held within the system. The nodes communicate with each other across a secure network, with automated routines for self‐checking, replication and repair.

If a digital file stored in one of the nodes becomes corrupted or lost, it is automatically restored from one of the other nodes. Each node also uses a technical arrangement by which files are copied and stored on two or more physical disks, with self‐checking and replication between the disks. These measures ensure that the system is extremely resilient and capable of preserving content for many years.

This system is secure and meets the requirements of the Regulations. A digital rights management system prevents digital copying and ensures that a deposited work may only be displayed at one computer at a time within the premises of each legal deposit library.

Access to the material

Users of each deposit library can identify legal deposit material within the library’s collections and submit a request to use it.

For users in the British Library, the National Library of Scotland and the National Library of Wales, access to the material is via the local node. Readers in Oxford, Cambridge or Dublin connect to one of the British Library nodes via a secure network in order to view the material. In all circumstances, access is managed by an overall digital policy module which controls all use of material and is delivered through a secured remote desktop browser system.


How to deposit your digital publications

Legal deposit advice for publishers of websites, CD-ROMs and other e-publications

Request access restrictions for your publications

Information on our notice and takedown procedure