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Death, Taxes, Hard Disk Loss

Won?t happen to you? Let?s face some facts By Miles Weston

Undercover DMN correspondent Miles Weston offers another entertaining polemic in installment 7 of his DVDeep Throat series. This time, Weston offers another warning from that kooky robot of Lost in Space fame. Danger!, croaks the robot, wondering if you've backed up your data. You haven't? Well, keep in mind the three certainties of life: Death, taxes and hard drive loss.

 Danger, Will Robinson!

Yes it really is the second part of Lost in Space and it really is another warning.  Just like the robot alerting the Robinson family, though we realize the effort will probably fall on deaf ears.

But just like the coming of Jack Valentis (sorry -- FCC's) mandated broadcast flag in your HDTV programs, next year there is another inevitable coming:

- you are going to have your system infected by a worm, virus or Trojan horse that will kill all of your data and content

- youre going to have a hard drive crash

- lightning will strike a power line near your house and cook your entire system

- You are going to accidentally delete a file (maybe your vacation video file youve been working on for weeks) 

Death, Taxes, HD Loss
Wont happen to you?  Lets face some facts:

1. In the first half of the year virus scribblers unleashed 4677 new viruses -- or 26 a day -- and that was an increase of 21% over last year!  No wonder security software companies do such a brisk business.

2. It doesnt matter which operating system you use -- MS, Apple, Unix, Linux -- these people who find it "fun" to take over your system or just destroy your data. They'll find ways in.

3. Protection software only protects you AFTER the stuff has been unleashed and has infected hundreds or thousands of systems.  It isnt proactive.

4. Seagate just announced a five-year warranty on HDs but "your mileage may vary."  And when the drive goes south they may swap it out for you but what about all of your great, irreplaceable content?

5. According to people who keep these kinds of statistics, lightning strikes somewhere in the country over 30 times a day.

6. According to Contingency Planning Research you are the cause of 50% of all computer disasters.

If you work for a big company, you dont worry about those sorts of problems because youve got people who are paid big bucks to protect you from yourself.  If youre in a small to medium sized business (which is most of us), any protection is usually haphazard at best.  If you have a stand-alone PC or home network (like we just set up in our house), only about 10% of you have any form of back up according to IDC. 

That means all of the TV programs you time-shifted for later viewing, all of the digital family photos, all of your vacation videos and all of your family records can disappear in a heartbeat because of some outside force or your own "Oh *&*%$" action.

Having two hard drives completely die in our years of storage and video marketing and losing more files than we care to think about, we are paranoid about backup at the office, at home and on the road.   

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