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Top 5 Reasons for Digital Photo Disasters

With the holiday season quickly approaching, many of us are looking forward to spending time with our family and friends. These special times, which used to be captured on film, are now recorded digitally on a video recording device or a camera. We revealed the top causes of memory card disasters from digital camera users desperate to recover their memories.

1. Reformatting Users often forget that reformatting a memory card will remove all the files stored on it including protected pictures and print orders. This data can only be retrieved by experts so Ontrack advises users to think again before you reformat.

2. Overwriting A common mistake is the accidental overwriting of images held on camera memory cards with new photos. It’s easily done. So check, check and check again that you’ve successfully transferred your images onto your PC, laptop, CD or DVD before taking new pictures.

3. Cracked and damaged media Packing memory cards into overstuffed suitcases can result in them becoming bent or damaged on the journey home, making them unreadable. Wrapping cards in clothes and placing them in the middle of your case offers some degree of protection in transit and helps ensure the safety of your pictures during your return trip.

4. Burnt media Leaving memory cards in an elevated temperature environment – close to a heat source such as a radiator or oven – will increase the chances of failure.  Heat is unlikely to cause damage to the digital photos on the memory card but may stop the card from being recognized in a card reader.

5. Holiday injuries For those of you that opt for a tropical vacation instead of a snowy week with the in-laws, digital cameras often get dropped in the sand or splashed with water around the pool, damaging smart media to the extent that photos can’t be viewed. Only an expert can recover digital images from smart media damaged in this way, so users should be careful to keep digital cameras in padded and watertight cases to keep them safe.

“Recent research1 found that almost 90% of consumers now own a digital camera but around one-third don’t back up their photographs,” said Phil Bridge, business development manager at Ontrack Data Recovery. “The danger is that they could lose once-in-a-lifetime memories if anything happens to the memory cards that store their images.”

“Our list of memory card disasters highlights the need to protect smart media and alert digital camera users to the most common problems so that they can make sure it doesn’t happen to them,“ he added.

1 Source: Symantec survey of 2,227 consumers

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