Tales from the Data Recovery Lab: Why Offsite Backup is 100% Necessary

Tales from the Data Recovery Lab: Why Offsite Backup is 100% Necessary

February 25

Ashley Toy is the marketing specialist at Gillware Data Recovery and a contributor to the Recovery Zone. The original version of this article appears on the Gillware Data Recovery Blog

As the only backup solution developed by a data recovery lab, Gillware has a unique perspective on why backup, especially offsite backup, is so important. We all know that backup is something we should be doing, but not something that we all do.

Backup is a sort of insurance policy to protect your data from any number of data loss threats. Consider the following data loss situations that are all too common and could send your device to the data recovery lab if a working backup solution is not in place:

  • Deletion: Whether you accidentally deleted a file or an employee has maliciously deleted data from their machine, deletion happens all the time. Data recovery in a lab is possible, but restoring files from a backup is obviously much easier.
  • Reformatting/Corruption: Logical data recovery, while one of the more common and manageable types of recoveries labs perform, is still more cumbersome than restoring from a backup.
  • Hardware failure: This is where it gets tricky. Most of the time, professional recovery from mechanically failed hardware can be successful, however a hard drive that’s been dropped or has simply become damaged with age presents more of a challenge. Again, backup is always the easier option.

In all of these cases, the other factor to consider is the cost of data recovery. In every case, the cost of professional recovery will be considerably more than what maintaining a backup would have cost. When you consider the amount of downtime required when your device is undergoing professional recovery, the cost becomes even higher.

While these data loss situations may not seem all that bad, there are other situations in which backup is not only cheaper and easier than data recovery, but it could be your only chance at getting your data back.

192862_149184265161255_8115558_oEven the best labs can’t recover data in certain situations. Consider the following:

  • Lost or stolen equipment: With nothing to recover data from, a backup would be your only hope if your computer or external hard drive were lost or stolen.
  • Irreparably damaged platters: If platters are shattered, melted or severely scored, there is no data left to recover.
  • Encryption: The whole point of encrypting data can work against you in a data recovery situation. Without the encryption key, the data is left inaccessible, for better or for worse.
  • Other damage beyond repair: In some hardware failure situations, the data cannot be recovered due to the severity of the problem.

In these situations, there is simply no data to recover, or no possible way to access the data. This means that without a solid backup in place, the data is truly lost forever.

Take it from the data recovery experts: The best recovery case is one that doesn’t have to enter our lab at all, but instead one that recovers its data using a reliable, offsite backup solution.

Photo credit: Kenny Louie via Flickr