The top five data recovery myths

Are you falling for the top five data recovery myths?

data-recovery-mythsAs soon as people began storing data on hard drives, hard drives began failing and data began to be lost. Here are some of the more common data recovery myths that I get asked about and educated customers on. I thought it time to quash these. So here are the most popular data recovery myths that we hear from customers in the Capital Region.

1. The least expensive data recovery quote should be the quote you choose. Whether dealing with a business or personal data loss, the outcome of the recovery will often not be the same. While every client is looking for a cost-effective solution that will recovery all their data not all outcomes are the same. Customers are often swayed by the appeal of free evaluations, capped prices or the cheapest recovery quote. Often users find out the company they are dealing with has little or no experience in data recovery, the quote contains hidden fees or they recover back only part of the data. To often customers waste valuable time and money with companies who are not data recovery experts.

Eric’s Computer Services offers expert data recovery services. I offer a full diagnostic, certified and partnered with the best companies in the world.

2. If a data loss occurs I have someone to handle it (my IT department, friend, or local computer guy). Few people or companies have the tools, software and knowledge to perform a data recovery. When a data loss occurs, everyone looks to the IT department friend, or local computer guy. When it is established they cannot do the recovery looking to a third party may be the next logical step, but not all data recovery providers offer an assessment of what can be recovered or access to the actual engineers working on your case. Make sure the data recovery provider is willing and able to work with you step-by-step, keeping you apprised of the process and what can actually be recovered.

When you choose me I will be the actual engineer working on your case, if we work with one of my data recovery partners that has specific expertise I will be in contact directly with that engineer.

3. I have a backup system or cloud storage in place so I do not need to worry about data loss. Unfortunately, having a backup system in place is not a fool-proof guarantee that your data will never be lost, or need a recovery. Moreover, many backups are not real-time and some of your critical data may not have been included in the backup before the data loss occurred.

Data loss is a common occurrence even with backups. Often I run across clients needing recovery even when they have a backup for the following reasons:

    • Data was deleted accidentally, and the backups do not contain the deleted data
    • Viruses, malware, ransomware deleted files and or backups
    • Client has cloud storage but after a computer failure it was discovered all files were not backed up
    • The client though they had backups but the backups did not exist or were bad (corrupt backups, backups were not running, backups were old, etc.)

4. Data recovery is not possible for some technologies, or is expensive. Not all recoveries are expensive and all most all technologies can be recovered.  While recovering from mechanical hard drive failures is typically the most common. I offer recoveries from SSDs, Flash Drives, memory cards, CDs, DVDs, floppy disks, databases, virtual machines, and even encrypted drives. Very, very few pieces of media are not recoverable. Data loss is never a lost cause until a  professional data recovery attempts it and even then only if you get a second opinion.

Because you may only have one chance to recover your data, it is essential to choose a provider that handles every job with the same level of concern, dedication and attention to cost-effectiveness, regardless of size, and can assist in prioritizing the recovery strategy according to the most critical needs and locate specific data on the used areas of the drive.

5. If the first attempt fails, I can try again. If your hard drive crashes or fails, your first instinct may be to try every data recovery procedure you can Google, try free software or send it to the first company you can find. The first data recovery attempt provides the best chance of successfully extracting your files especially in cases where the drive is approaching unreadable/unmountable with degrading health.  While often a second or third attempt can be made I have seen some drives and data ruined, some unrecoverable and some were recoverable at a higher cost.

In cases of recovery a customer should weigh their options but typically all hardware recoveries, physical recoveries, drives that are making any kind of abnormal noises like grinding, business related files or important data that was not backed-up and is irreplaceable should be handled by a professional the first time.

Bonus Myth

The Freezer trick has never worked, and it never will. It was more talked about around 10-15 years ago. According to the urban legends, if the heads of a drive are stuck on the platters, freezing the drive will somehow shrink the platters and get the heads unstuck. I am unsure how a kitchen freezer is suppose to shrink metal and glass (hint it not possible).

Placing a hard drive in a freezer and then powering it up can short out the electronics or cause irreparable platter damage due to moisture condensing on the platters. Hard drives are designed to operate within certain environmental conditions. All manufactures list the operating template at about 5 to 50 degrees Celsius (41 to 122 Fahrenheit). Freezing a drive places, the drive in extreme temperatures outside of its design specifications and can lead to rotational scoring, which will cause data loss.

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