Data Recovery 101: How to Diagnose Your Data Loss Situation

Thursday, 23 September 2021 by Ontrack Team

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Damaged Hard Drive Statistics


When dreaded instances of data loss or device damage occur, the cause may seem obvious, however it’s important to ask fundamental questions prior to data recovery efforts to ensure that your device can be assessed, handled, and recovered in the right way.

Questions for Proper Data Loss Diagnosis

  1. What happened?

The more information you can provide, the better the odds of getting to the root of the problem as quickly as possible. Was water involved? Did you drop your device? Do you think your data has fallen victim to a power surge? Making note of events that could have caused your data loss issue is an essential first step in diagnosing the type, and scope, of data recovery measures your device may need.

  1. What was taking place at the time of data loss/device failure?

It’s all in the details when it comes to assessing the damage of data loss. A strange whirring noise or repetitive screen glitch may seem trivial; however, it may be the very evidence a data recovery expert needs to rule out certain issues. It bears repeating: Be specific.

  1. What recovery measures have already taken place?

So, you tried putting your iPhone in rice and things didn’t quite work out how you’d hoped. It happens to the best of us, but you’ll need to disclose that and any other DIY data recovery attempts when trying to diagnose the situation. Why? Self-recovery efforts may cause additional physical device harm or data loss and knowing which popular internet hacks may have been used can help the engineers assigned to your case make better decisions regarding how to approach a solution.

Data Recovery Doesn’t End Here

As the saying goes, “Everything starts with a question.” Answers to your data loss situation will vary depending on whether your case falls into one of two categories: logical data loss or physical data loss. Both types of media damage will be explored in part two of our series.

Have the questions above sparked questions of your own? Contact the experts at Ontrack to start your free data recovery evaluation today.