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Most archival repositories have experienced the situation where a document or even a folder is missing from its normal location. In these cases, there’s a good chance that the item has been misfiled or inadequately tracked. However, theft should not be ruled out.
Maintain an up-to-date log of items that cannot be located and periodically check it. When an item is missing, the loss should be reported to your supervisor. Consider building an electronic database of missing items and keep track of the date reported missing, the date last known in custody, and your search history. Whether it’s electronic or on paper, the log/database should be kept secure. If after several searches your item remains missing, consider reporting it to the appropriate groups/networks, noting its status as missing. You will find examples of missing materials networks in Getting the Word Out.
If there is evidence of theft or if theft is suspected, immediately notify your supervisor and security head, if applicable.