Whether your baby pictures won’t load or your business contacts are missing, losing your archived information is stressful and time-consuming. Fortunately, in most circumstances you actually have a decent shot of having your data recovered, provided you pay the right people a pretty penny.
Yes, there are DIY options that you can consider, but often it’s a better idea to put the fate of your important information into professional hands.
That said, how do you go about choosing the right company? There are a lot of factors to keep in mind, but first and foremost it’s important to keep an eye out for red flags.
What You Don’t Want
Data recovery is often shockingly expensive, but opting into the data recovery service provider that gives you the lowest quote can be a huge mistake.
Low-cost data recovery companies are known to use “bait and switch” tactics. If their price seems uncannily low, be sure to remember that they are not committed to charging you the quote they may have given you. Consider asking them what their policy is in the event that your damage is (big surprise) more serious than they originally predicted. The last thing you want is to have your hard drive returned to you along with a bill 2 to 3 times higher than you expected.
Low prices can also be misrepresented when companies fail to mention hidden charges that they quietly add to your bill. Make sure to ask if you are being charged for parts, additional hourly labor, evaluation fees, and basically anything else that might be added to the price the company is offering. It’s generally good to ask over email so you can have their answer in writing.
What You Do Want
Try to find a data recovery service provider that is recommended by other high-ranked tech businesses. Ask for referrals from other tech-repair companies like Geek Squad or call up Staples or Best Buy and see what they think. Yelp can also be a good resource, but make sure to read through the praise and the disappointment to see what the company’s ups and downs tend to be.
When you’ve isolated a few potential options, make sure that the companies have all their proper certifications. Ensure that they possess up-to-date documents from a third-party security auditing company and that those documents comply with SOX (Sarbanes-Oxley Act) and GLBA (Graham-Leach-Bliley Act). The SOC (Service Organization Control) Type 2 certification is especially helpful as it requires background checks for all employees prior to employment.
Check to see if the company has a secure network and certified employees that undergo training to ensure that they can keep sensitive and confidential data protected. Also be sure to ask about the company’s proof of possession of a certified ISO Class 5 Cleanroom. Cleanrooms are necessary for proper hard drive repair.
Finally, don’t forget to ask about a company’s method of encryption (for files in transit) and data destruction (of the original drive).
If all of that checks out, chances are you have a decent option on your hands. The best possible scenario? You find a company that offers free diagnostics and only charges for data successfully recovered.
In conclusion, good, reliable data recovery providers do exist, and they are worth seeking out. As long as you take the time to do your research, you’re likely to be back on your feet with your data intact before long. Good luck!