Critical Recovery Steps for Fire & Smoke Damaged Devices

Flashback Data has historically had a lot of success recovering data from both fire and flood damaged devices. However, there are differences on how to have the best chance of a recovery since many of these devices are not recoverable. If your hard drive, server, or any other device has suffered fire, smoke, or water damage, follow these critical steps:

  • Make sure that your computer is off and unplugged before touching any connected media. This is a vital step, since fire-damaged devices may have live electrical connections.
  • Do not attempt to clean or repair a smoke-damaged device. Specialized equipment and expertise are necessary to clean and recover data from a hard drive or other media.
  • Do not attempt to dry water-damaged hard drives. Many fire-damaged drives suffer secondary damage from water and fire retardant chemicals. Flashback Data has the necessary resources to clean damaged media, and all cleaning procedures need to be completed in a cleanroom environment.
  • Call Flashback Data to speak to an engineer. Our experts can help determine the best course of action and advise you on how to best preserve your device for shipment.

Because the platters of hard drives are mostly sealed off, a severely damaged device may still contain recoverable data. We have an ISO 5 cleanroom and use specialized tools and technology to retrieve information from damaged drives. As with all data recovery situations, time is an important factor, as media can continue to degrade after the initial disaster.

Proud to be the first private lab globally with the same international accreditation as the same level as FBI and DEA:  ASCLD/LAB International (ISO 17025:2005) since 4/2010.