From paper to digital with Piql Services

Piql has provided services to digitize and preserve legal documents for the Transportation Department of the State of Rio de Janeiro, resulting in increased efficiency, security and improved public services.


DETRO-RJ, the Transportation Department of the State of Rio de Janeiro, is responsible for safeguarding the best practices by the road transportation industry. DETRO-RJ manages various types of documents, including thousands of legal proceedings per month, and archives files for a minimum of 10 years. Until now, all records have been stored physically as paper documents. As they seek to modernize their services, they decided to digitize and securely preserve all documents.

President of DETRO-RJ, Mr. José Fernando Moraes Alves, is responsible for the task and with his experience as Chief Police Officer, he has extensive competence on legal requirements related to protecting rights of the citizens when replacing paper documents with digital files. Further, it was important that the digitized documents retain all legal information necessary for the legal proceedings, and allow efficient sharing of information with other organizations.


DETRO-RJ experienced that their paper archives were rapidly growing. Storing and retrieving documents required a lot of manual work. This made the legal proceedings slow and hard to share with other state departments.

DETRO-RJ wanted to change to a digital workflow, with a solution integrated with their IT infrastructure. However, as they are working with legal documents, it was imperative to use a storage technology that would be accepted by Brazilian Courts. The “microfilm law” in Brazil (L 5.433) recognizes microfilm as a copy that retains the same value as the original paper documents. The problem is that microfilm is an analog medium that does not integrate with IT infrastructure.

Piql enables DETRO-RJ to operate an OAIS compliant workflow and integrate paper archives with digital-born documents


The IT Department of DETRO-RJ was interested in Piql’s solution because it complies with the microfilm law regulations and at the same time integrates with IT infrastructure. They engaged with Piql in a Proof-of-Concept to demonstrate how paper documents could be converted to piqlFilm and be integrated with their IT infrastructure. Piql also demonstrated how an OAIS workflow can enable the integration of digitized paper documents with born-digital documents, and create an environment compliant with ISO 14721 and CONARQ (Council of the National Archives of Brazil). Piql was awarded a contract by DETRO-RJ to digitize all documents stored at DETRO-RJ’s paper archives and implement an OAIS compliant digital workflow.

Paper documents were digitized and stored to piqlFilm in human readable visual format as well as in computer readable digital format. The digital files are stored as AIPs (Archival Information Package); preservation packages that retain the file and metadata combined. Piql provided all services related to digitization and IT integration, including Piql’s data access system that processes AIP packages securely connected to DETRO-RJ’s IT infrastructure. When files need to be retrieved, DETRO’s employees no longer need to manually handle physical documents. Instead, the files are retrieved from a digital access system and can be shared with multiple departments at the same time.

DETRO-RJ periodically receives files stored on piqlFilm and can rest assured they are securely preserved with no need for future investments.


DETRO-RJ will soon be completely paperless, with both their digitized and digital-born documents securely stored on piqlFilm.