Aug 13, 10:34 AM

Severe Summer Season Outlook Updated by NOAA

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the U.S. government agency that focuses on ocean, waterway and weather conditions, recently updated its outlook for the annual season of bad weather. The forecast now states an increase in Atlantic hurricane activity is now predicted to be ‘above-normal’.

During summer months from June until November, the east coast and surrounding areas are threatened by severe weather and natural disasters. The environmental conditions can be rough and that’s bad for digital storage: power surges, heatwaves, fires, storms and flooding can effectively destroy data. Impacts can be felt in computer systems and data storage and become a calamity to local business operations.

Severe Summer Weather Season Far From Over

It should be known that data is resilient. Not all has to be lost. The updated forecast from the NOAA is a “reminder to be prepared”. That means learning a bit ahead of time about potential threats and how to protect data safety in event of unsettled conditions.

Here are some scenarios and disaster management protocols for wild weather:

Scenario:

Tropical Storm Charlie is headed straight for town, promising days of torrential downpour and subsequent flooding. Water damage is inevitable!

Solution:

Before you build a boat and sail away, relocate all tech equipment and cables to a suitable height off the ground. If your equipment is damaged by water, do not: power on the devices, open waterlogged media, attempt to dry out the media, or clean up the water. Leave the digital technology alone; messing with saturated electronics could result in electrocution! Seal damaged media in an airtight container.

Scenario:

Now, Tropical Storm Charlie has grown exponentially into Hurricane Charlie, bringing high winds of up to 160 kilometers per hour! The strong gusts have felled trees onto power lines, resulting in power outages across the Northeast.

Solution:

Data loss from power outages is most commonly a result of short-circuiting and subsequent fires from electrical surges. During a storm, be sure to unplug all electronic cords, thus disconnecting the devices from a potential deadly current.

Scenario:

We love the summer sun, but a heat wave? Not so fun. Moreover, extreme heat is extremely bad for technology.

Solution:

Store computers and their associated devices in a cool, dry location in an air-conditioned room to prevent overheating. If you wouldn’t leave your child or dog in a hot car, don’t leave your technology there either! “Keeping it cool” will not only preserve your sanity, but your hard drive functionality and data.


Of course the best disaster prevention practice is to back up all your devices. This includes transferring the data on desktop PCs, tablets, cellphones, and music players to simple, lightweight devices such as external hard drives, USBs, CDs, DVDs, or cloud storage.

Last, but not least: don’t panic!

Category: data loss prevention

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