When your IT provider upgrades your hard disk, or transfers your data to a new PC, what happens to your old hard disk? It’s easy to assume that a customers data has transferred successfully to the new disk and that the old one can be disposed of safely.
Sadly we’ve seen too many situations where a customer who previously felt their data has been fully transferred has since realised they have actually lost some files or some files are not opening in the way they expect; this is why we typically raise a new disk retention ticket in every relevant scenario.
With disk retention, we’ll typically pop your carefully labelled hard disk into our water resistant fireproof data safe (itself in a locked cupboard, in a locked workshop, in a locked and alarmed office inside a locked and alarmed building all covered by CCTV and monitored out of hours by a local security firm) and raise what we call a “Disk Retention” ticket. The ticket will track where the disk was pulled from and will allow us to identify your hard disk in case you are missing some data. The data can then be pulled from the hard disk and the data can be recovered and transferred to your system.
If after a specified period of time you have not identified any missing data, the disk will be removed from the fire safe and then professionally and irrevocably wiped. If the disk is very old it will then be disposed of as electrical waste, or newer disks will be put into our recycled hard disk pile. The disk retention service is undertaken as part of our normal support process – you do not have to ask us to take this step – though if the disk contains data of a personal nature (as opposed to business data) we may ask you to keep the disk yourself.
We typically retain disks for at least two months though if we judge the data to be extra critical (e.g. if the disk was pulled from a server or from a computer where the user saved data to the local disk instead of a server) we may keep the disk for longer, sometimes up to a year. We may make a small charge for disposing of your hard disk and we make a small labour charge for the actions undertaken in putting your disk into retention and then wiping it.