With so much of our day-to-day lives depending on technology and the data they use, it’s no surprise that accidental data loss can be a serious interruption when it happens. Whether it’s a USB drive full of cherished photos or a hard drive full of important work documents, data loss comes in all forms. What all such scenarios have in common though is that there’s almost always a way to prevent it from happening.
Like making your bed or flossing your teeth, forming good habits with your data will not only help you to keep organized, but also it’s bound to pay off later on. So, to help you avoid the heartbreak that is accidental data loss, here are TeraDrive’s top data protection habits:
1. Backup, backup, backup
Backups are the number one way to protect yourself from data loss. A failed hard drive doesn’t have to be the end of the world, provided you’ve done your due diligence. When it comes to backups, remember the saying: one is none, and two is one. What does this mean? You should always have more than one copy of your data, because if your only version is lost, then your one copy has become zero. Avoid this by having multiple backups, in multiple locations, in multiple formats.
The best practice for backups is to first have your physical version, stored on your computer. Another backup of the file can be put onto a hard disk or USB drive, and ideally stored in a separate location such as your office, just in case the unthinkable happens and a fire or flood destroys your data at home. Finally, store your files online as well, via any of the number of cloud storage options on the market. Cloud storage is great, since it will be unaffected by anything that could cause a physical failure, and all you’ll need is an internet connection to access it.
2. Switch off the computer
Get in the habit of turning off your computer when it’s not in use. Because your computer continually runs processes in the background, even when you’re not using it, it increases the risk of something going wrong. Additionally, leaving your computer on through the night puts it at an additional risk for power surges.
3. Use a quality anti-virus software
Accidentally downloading a virus is a common way to wind up with data issues. Some viruses will manipulate, corrupt, or completely delete important files, potentially forcing your computer to crash. This can lead to further data loss. Avoid this frustrating problem by installing a quality anti-virus software, and make sure to keep it updated. This is important because viruses are constantly being updated and improved to circumvent anti-virus programs, so stay ahead of the curve by keeping your software up to date.
4. Stay protected from power surges
You could experience major data loss through no fault of your own due to a power surge. These can happen due to faulty wiring, an electrical storm, or any other number of reasons. They’re impossible to predict, so the best course of action is to protect yourself preemptively with a UPS, or uninterrupted power supply. This is essentially an external battery that kicks in when the main power supply surges or shuts off. A UPS will protect your computer and files from shutting down in the case of these power failures, giving you time to save and backup your data as necessary, as well as properly shut down your computer.
5. Keep your computer in a safe spot
For the hard disk or solid state drive in your computer, you can reduce a lot of data loss risk by simply keeping its position in mind. Your computer needs constant airflow to keep the components cool, so ensure there’s enough space around the external fans, and that there’s no dust or other debris blocking these openings. Furthermore, we recommend keeping your computer away from direct sunlight, since the constant heat can overheat it, and important components may permanently or temporarily fail. The same goes for humid environments, since the condensation can eventually wind up inside the electronics, potentially creating physical problems.
6. Be gentle with your hardware
In some cases, cutting off power to a system while it’s mid-process can be enough to corrupt your data. Similarly, hard disk drives are fairly susceptible to shocks and vibrations caused by drops or shaking. If your computer is in the middle of an operation, we recommend leaving it be until it’s done, just in case.
7. Don’t rely on data recovery myths
There’s countless tips and tricks online outlining ways to recover your data at home, DIY style. These range from console commands that claim to automatically ‘unformat’ your disk for you, all the way to wackier ideas like leaving your hard drive in the freezer overnight. We recommend avoiding any kind of DIY data recovery process, since one misstep could make recovery even more difficult. When in doubt, we recommend always leaving data recovery to the professionals.
With thousands of successful recoveries under our belt, TeraDrive is the number one choice for recovery in the event of accidental data loss. If you have more questions about safeguarding your data, or you’re looking for help with recovering your lost data at once, contact TeraDrive today.
Comments? Send us an email