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March 31st was World Backup Day. We can thank a few of the forward thinking community members of Reddit for dreaming up this initiative to spread awareness and remind everyone to secure their digital assets. It also gives us a reason to not only celebrate the need for backup, but it’s heroes as well.
As the World Backup Day site explains, your computer's hard drive — the part where all your data is kept — is the computer component most likely to break down unexpectedly:
There are a number of ways a hard drive can fail. A head crash is exactly what it sounds like: when the read / write head (the "needle") crashes into the hard drive platter, ruining the drive. The actuator arm can break, so that the arm can't move around and read data. The electrical components inside can fail, the drive could become corrupted etc.
Furthermore, the hard drive is the only part of the computer that can be damaged by software (without even physically touching the drive). Viruses, malware and accidental deletion can all damage the data on a hard drive. Though this data can sometimes be recovered, the easiest solution is to back up data on the drive before it becomes an issue.
And just how likely are you to have trouble with the component "most likely" to break down, you might be wondering? The statistics are probably a bit worse than you might've imagined:
[Hard drives] fail at an annual rate of 3 percent: every year, 3 percent of new hard drives fail, and this rate gets higher as the drive gets older. With a three year-old hard drive, the annual failure rate is around six percent. And remember: when a hard drive fails, if the data isn't backed up, it's gone.
With a three year old drive, the annual failure rate is 6 percent.
While that number seems low, it’s actually pretty high when it relates to losing EVERYTHING on your computer. You’d probably take the stairs if you knew the elevator to the floor of your office had a failure rate of 6 percent!
While hard drive failure might cause data loss, there are other things that happen more frequently and are caused mostly by human error, including accidental deletion of important files, theft or loss and physical damage. There are also acts of nature, which can wipe out your digital data such as earthquakes, floods and hurricanes.
World Backup Day is all about awareness. Are you proactive or reactive? Protecting your data before disaster strikes will save you a lot of time, money and heartache! Remember, Murphy’s Law – anything that can go wrong will go wrong! It’s only a matter of time.
To learn more about World Backup Day, please visit www.worldbackupday.com and to learn more about cloud backup, download our complimentary guide: What you Need to Know About Cloud Backup.
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