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Records Management

Personal Information Bank (PIB) Directory

The Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA) defines a “personal information bank” as a collection of personal information that is organized and capable of being retrieved using an individual’s name or an identifying number or particular assigned to the individual. The PIB Directory is a tool that allows the university to inform community members, who may wish to make a request for access to their personal information, the type of personal information the university may have about them, how it is used, and what roles may have access to that information.

To update or add a new personal information bank to the registry at McMaster University, please complete this online form, or reach out to the privacy office at


  • McMaster Record Retention Schedule (MRRS)
  • FIPPA Bill 8 – the Recordkeeping Amendment – effective January 1, 2016
  • Directory of Records
  • Record Keeping Best Practices 
      • record is any record of information however recorded, whether by electronic means, in print form, on film, or otherwise.
      • Ensure that confidential information is protected against unauthorised access. Store confidential records in a secure location such as a locked filing cabinet, locked record room or on a secure server.
      • Dispose of confidential information securely, and ensure that any personal information to be destroyed has been authorised for disposal.  Do not place confidential material in recycling bins.
      • Record Keeping: Distinguish university records with long term value from transitory records which are of short term value and have no continuing operational, informational, evidential or historical value. As a general rule, destroy transitory records as soon as they have served their primary purpose.
      • Transitory Records are records that are required to perform a routine action/duty, or to prepare a final record. These records are needed for a short period of time in order to complete the action/duty. Records kept for convenience/information purposes by an office that does not have primary responsibility for keeping the record are also considered transitory.
      • Retain terminated HR employee files for a period of 8 years for audit purposes.  Please note that the HR employee file is the official record on file for the University.  Any documents relating to the employment of the individual should be forwarded to the appropriate HR Office.  It is not necessary to keep duplicates in department offices. Unless otherwise noted in a collective agreement, information in an employee’s file remains in that file while they are an active employee of the University.