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HMRC internal manual

VAT Traders’ Records Manual

How to treat requests for a concession: Computer produced records

Records produced by a computer system do not necessarily conform to the patterns of manual systems. Where you can establish a direct relationship, you should apply the guidance in the table above. Otherwise, the tax specialist should determine the documentation necessary to provide a satisfactory audit trail and the appropriate retention periods. Where records are stored in an electronic form, the trader must be able to ensure the records’ integrity (the data has not changed) and legibility (can be made available in electronic forms satisfactory to HMRC) throughout the required storage period. If the integrity and legibility of the stored electronic records depends on a specific technology (hardware and/or software), then the original technology or an equivalent that provides backwards compatibility for the whole of the required storage period must also be retained.