Savvy Computing
Preventing Catastrophes from Data Loss

August 2004
by Reid Goldsborough

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What’s the worst thing that can happen to your computer? Worse than a hard disk crash, virus infection, spam assault, denial-of-service attack, hacker takeover, fire, flood, or other human, mechanical, or natural disaster is a faulty backup when you really need it. If the computer blows up, you can recover if and only if your data are backed up securely.

Tape backup is still popular among business users because of its long use and cost-effectiveness per megabyte of data.

This is true despite the increasing popularity of other backup solutions. Many home and small businesses use recordable CDs and DVDs to back up newly created data. Various types of computer users are now employing an external hard drive connected to a USB port to quickly and cost-effectively back up entire hard drives. And those with broadband Internet connections can use Internet backup services to store selected backup data conveniently offsite.

Still, tape backup has a large installed base. But like anything having to do with a computer, backing up to tape isn’t foolproof. Tape drives, backup tapes, and tape backup software all can fail.

When they do, panicked computer users often rely on the services of a data recovery firm such as CBL Data Recovery Technologies Inc., a company headquartered in Armonk, N.Y., with branch offices around the world and a Web site at

Tactics for Reducing Risk

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