HC Deb 14 June 2004 vol 422 c753W
Mr. Allan

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what his Department's policy is in respect of the computer file formats used for the(a) distribution and (b) archiving of publicly available documents. [173358]

Fiona Mactaggart

The Home Office is keen to ensure that published documents are fully accessible to all members of the public who wish to use them. We make use of standard electronic formats that should meet the requirements of most document users.

(a) Distribution

The computer files and formats used for the distribution of Home Office material are Word/ Excel based documents, which are standard and widely compatible both internally and with external suppliers.

(b) Archiving

Material placed on the web site for access by the public is at present stored in mixture of Portable Document Format (PDF) and Hypertext Mark Up Language (HTML). The Home Office Communication Directorate is actively considering the benefits of storage of future material in Extensible Mark-Up Language (XML).

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