Natural Disasters Raise Data Recovery Awareness

Technology v Nature. The fight still continues without any clear winners. Nature’s fury occasionally reminds us of how easily it can overwhelm all that modern technology has to offer, but indomitable man just goes back to the drawing board to come up with an improved solution.
The tremendous advances in data storage technology have been taken for granted by most users for whom the phenomenal growth in storage capacity can hardly keep pace with their appetite for more and more data. At the same time, the high-tech world of computers gives the users a false feeling of invincibility. While data storage devices have become more robust than in the past, the sheer numbers have made data disasters more common than ever before. There are many reasons why hard disk drives and other data storage devices can – and do – fail.
When Mother Nature strikes, as with the recent tsunami that ravaged half the earth or the winter storms that gripped much of North America, it is big news. While loss of life is truly irreplaceable, these disasters affect many other aspects of life. At times like these, there is a heightened awareness about data loss and data recovery. “But the single biggest culprit in data loss is human error,” claims Allison Beckley, VP (Customer Service) at Disk Doctor Labs, Inc., one of the pioneers of data recovery. “And a close second is the inherent limitations of the data storage technology itself,” adds Tariq Aslam, the CEO of Disk Doctors. It can happen anytime, anywhere, and to anybody. If you deal with data extensively, the odds are you will suffer data loss sooner or later. The important thing is being able to cope with it. And different types of users need to have different strategies for safeguarding their data. A high school student who uses his PC for gaming and the occasional term project cannot be expected to have UPS, tape back-ups and RAID systems. On the other hand, a bank cannot feel complacent that it has protected its database by installing the latest anti-virus software and anything else is overkill. The user profile, the data criticality, available budget and resources all impact the data protection strategy. However, these are some general tips Disk Doctors has for avoiding and surviving data loss:
 Make a regular back-up of all your important data (including laptop drives)
 Test your back-ups regularly (especially if it is a tape back-up)
 Carry laptops in padded cases
 If it is mission critical business data, store it on RAID systems
 Use power surge protectors, and UPS systems for critical data
 Use regularly updated anti-virus software
 Restrict unauthorized access
 If you experience problems with your drive, move the data to another drive; don’t take any chances unless your data is worth less than the cost of a new drive
 If you still lose the data, do not panic; seek professional advice
 Data recovery is a specialized field, and not every computer technician can retrieve data
 If the data is critical, or if the drive makes unusual noises do not try DIY solutions
 When you shop around for a data recovery company, don’t consider the recovery charges only
 Look at the company experience, expertise, locations, facilities, testimonials, etc.
 You should not have to pay an up-front diagnostic fee, or pay for any hidden extras over the quoted price, or pay for the ‘effort’ if you did not get your data

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