Tickets cleanup ? generally

Hello,

I am running RT v2.0.15 on RedHat 7.2 for our support staff. I recently
posted a question on this list about the possibility of correcting errors,
within already stored tickets. I received the interesting following answer :

"I don’t think there’s anything like that. It’s contrary to the idea of
a ticketing system to be able to edit history like that.

seph"

I am quite new to ticketing systems, I was told about RT by a friend of
mine. Thus I don’t know the main outlines about softwares for support
staffs.

However, this request asking to remove true errors (such as spelling
errors - or spam !) does not look illegitimate : the staff is small (4
people) and they don’t fight against each other or against the company, so
they won’t remove important data just to harm the company or their
neighbours; can somebody tell me what are the main principles, what
thoughts, from a general point of vue, lead to decide for such an issue ?

.-. Robert GRASSO - CEDRAT S.A.
/v\ 10, Chemin de Pre Carre - ZIRST - 38246 MEYLAN Cedex - FRANCE
// \ Tel: +33 (0)4 76 90 50 45 Fax: +33 (0)4 76 90 16 09
/( )\ mailto:Robert.Grasso@cedrat.com
^^-^^
UNIX was not designed to stop you from doing stupid things, because
that would also stop you from doing clever things. – Doug Gwyn
Support service : mailto:support@cedrat.com
Commercial service : mailto:cedrat@cedrat.com
Web site : http://www.cedrat.com

However, this request asking to remove true errors (such as spelling
errors - or spam !) does not look illegitimate : the staff is small (4
people) and they don’t fight against each other or against the company, so
they won’t remove important data just to harm the company or their
neighbours; can somebody tell me what are the main principles, what
thoughts, from a general point of vue, lead to decide for such an issue ?

<takes off RT hat, puts on security hat>

The correspondence lodged in a ticketing system does form part of a trail
used to track a request. Something that you do need to keep in mind when
designing these systems, as with any other change tracking (RCS, CVS,
syslogs, printer dumps), is that they must be as unchangeable (in terms of
changing past items) as you can make it.

Once you have a public ability to change these event records, as you are
requesting, you have effectively made the usefulness of these records, in
a legal sense, null and void.

Now although you may not think that your logs have a legal basis at the
moment, this may change in the future (eg, some customer takes you to
court because, oh, an incorrect order was filled), and if you have that
capability, your legal standing is very much the poorer.

Summary: Its a history tool, and you never change the recorded history.

UNIX was not designed to stop you from doing stupid things, because
that would also stop you from doing clever things. – Doug Gwyn

                         Bruce Campbell                            RIPE
               Systems/Network Engineer                             NCC
             www.ripe.net - PGP562C8B1B             Operations/Security

However, this request asking to remove true errors (such as spelling
errors - or spam !) does not look illegitimate

Personally speaking, I’d rather add a new comment to the ticket along the
lines of:

"Oops! Read that as instead of "…

Re spam, nothing beats spamassassin IMO, so push your mails through it
before rt-mailgate. Procmail/Maildrop will come handy.

Binand