How to Secure Your Electronics

National Preparedness Month in September will be here soon, with many organizations reminding the American people to prepare for emergencies at home, at work, and in schools and communities. DriveSavers Data Recovery, Inc., experts in data recovery, reminds us that electronics can be seriously damaged when severe weather strikes. The company compiled a list of tips for keeping electronics safe before a storm hits.

  • Protect Your Electronics. Power spikes are instantaneous, dramatic increases in electrical voltage that occur when power is restored after a blackout or a lightning strike. They can damage or completely destroy electronic components. Most surge protector strips are adequate to absorb power spikes and surges, but they don't protect your computer from abruptly shutting down, which can corrupt data and may cause a complete loss of data if you hadn't saved the file you were working on at that moment. Your best option is to invest in an uninterruptible power supply (UPS). These are capable of handling power spikes and surges and contain a built-in battery that supplies a limited amount of power, allowing you to gracefully shut down your computer system.
  • Unplug Critical Electronics. If you don't own a surge protector or UPS, it's a good idea to unplug your computer, printers, and other electronic devices from their wall sockets before a storm arrives. This will ensure that all of your electronics are safe from being damaged should lighting strike a power line that is connected to your home.
  • Additional Power for Computing. When the electricity goes out, you'll want to have a secondary source of power to charge and operate cellphones, laptops, and other electronics. By purchasing a pay-as-you-go cellphone as a backup, laptop batteries, and a car charger, you can continue working even when you have no power.
  • Seal Your Gadgets. It's important to keep emergency electronics, such as a battery-operated radio and flashlights, sealed in a zip-lock bag and stored in a safe, dry space. This will help ensure that your emergency essentials will be working and at your disposal if you experience a flood or any water damage to your home.
  • Keep Your Cell. Use your cellphone to store emergency contact numbers and family contacts. If your cellphone has a camera, you can use it to take before and after pictures for insurance purposes.
  • Always Back Up. Sometimes it is inevitable that computer hardware will be damaged or lost in a disaster scenario. Always back up your important data, and back up often! This will prevent data loss even if the device itself is destroyed. Consider using an online backup service in addition to your regular backup regimen. Businesses and individuals in disaster-prone locales can benefit from online backup and cloud-based services because data are stored on remote computer servers that typically are located in different geographic locations that are "out of harm's way."

For more information about DriveSavers, visit its website.

Posted by Jerry Laws on Aug 09, 2012

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