A story from the Times-Picayune on a possible further problem for some of the unfortunate folk who have survived the hurricane: will there still be a record of their home ownership and mortgage status?

According to the article:

“one of the biggest legal ramifications of Hurricane Katrina’s flooding waters is the probable loss of real estate records dating back to the early 1800s. The records, which include titles, mortgages, conveyances and liens, were stored in the now-flooded basement of City Hall on Poydras Street.

In 2002, employees of Register of Conveyances Gasper Schiro began the tedious process of hand entering the records into computers, a $700,000 process that could have been contracted out and accomplished quickly but was instead done slowly by his staff to save money.”

This scenario shows the importance of true offsite data backup.