KÜRT – Data Recovery and Information Security

Memories can be “bought back”

Magyar Hírlap
2004. szeptember 16.

Many people preserve their summer holiday moments with a digital camera; however, photos stored in these sensitive machines may vanish without a trace thanks to a clumsy move or inadequate handling. With the help of a service launched only a few weeks ago by Kürt Rt., the data recovery experts, we now have the chance to get back our lost photos and with them our memories.

The end of summer is a time for showing round our holiday snaps. In the first weeks of September, corridors in workplaces echo with the accounts of people’s summer holiday experiences and of course, authentic documentation –i.e. passing round photos – is a vital part of the ritual. However, the recent boom in digital cameras may be a cause of distress for many amateur holiday photographers. Data preserved on flash memory cards are exposed to a multitude of risks and it can happen that hundreds of pictures taken during the holiday vanish into the ether. This distressing disappearance can be due to physical damage to the card, defective camera or phone software, carelessness, or an excessively strong magnetic field.
Taking adequate care may prevent, or at least minimise, the risk of data loss. But if disaster has already struck we don’t need to bury all the memories recorded in our pictures. Six weeks ago one of the leading data recovery companies of Europe, Kürt Rt. of Hungary, launched its new service: data recovery within 24 hours from flash drives (Compact Flash, SmartMedia, SD-, XD-, MMC cards) including not only digital camera flash drives, but also those in digital dictaphones, PDAs, and mobile phones. József Kmetty, deputy general manager of Kürt, told us that the company is able to recover data lost due to both physical and software damage. With software damage, the proportion of lost data that is recovered approaches a hundred percent (for example for photographs), while with physical damage around fifty percent of data may be recovered.
People, it seems, are interested in this new service, and they are even willing to pay large amounts of money in order to get their memories back again. The proof of this is the fifty clients in the first month of the service who brought their memory card problems to Kürt, the majority of them wanting to recover their lost digital photos”, says Kmetty. Flash drive data recovery has a fixed price: if there is less than one gigabyte, it costs 25 thousand forints for every 256 megabytes, over one gigabyte the fee is 50 thousand forints for every gigabyte. There are no additional expenses, for example no diagnostic examination fee. So the client knows the exact cost of seeing important data or his favourite pictures again when he comes to order. The deputy general manager believes that clients do not consider saving their photographs a waste of money. “People who have a modern digital camera and spend hundreds of thousands (of forints) on a holiday abroad and then take several hundred pictures to record their experiences do not regret paying a few thousand forints to ‘buy back’ pictures they believed to be lost.”
And not only photos need recovering…
Data loss in information technology increases on average by 30 percent in the summer months, a survey recently published by Kürt Rt. points out. According to experts, one obvious cause of the phenomenon is the rising temperature of computer components: heat generation and the reduction of heat in IT devices become unbalanced in a heat wave. Interestingly, while rising temperatures usually damage the hardware, the summer period shows a rise in data loss from the software in addition to the hardware problems. When they investigated the causes, experts arrived at a surprising conclusion. The problem stems from IT users, as excessive heat does not have a good effect on them either; they are less able to concentrate and consequently they observe safety rules less than they do in cooler periods.
Five good pieces of advice:

  • When you see the battery of your camera is going flat, stop taking pictures because the whole flash drive can easily become unreadable.
  • Do not open the memory card holder, or take the card out while the camera is on, or while saving is in progress.
  • Do not switch the camera to view mode while saving is in progress.
  • Do not use the same flash drive in several different cameras.
  • Do not break the connection between the computer and the camera while downloading pictures.