Damage from the 1900 Galveston hurricane, the deadliest natural disaster in U.S. history, was extensive. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Something to consider…. Have you ever taken a moment and asked yourself – what happens if I’m a victim of a natural disaster… whether it’s a hurricane, tornado, earthquake, fire, flood… or whatever…. Have you considered what would happen to my personal mementos? The ones that are irreplaceable?
I had never considered this until I heard a colleague complain about a virus that wiped away his operating system and all of his files. This includes photos from his daughter’s first year of life. That had my attention. I love my kids and my photos and memories of my family are irreplaceable to me.
In the wake of any natural disaster you will see the heartbreaking images of people sifting through debris trying to look for pieces of memories…How can you avoid this from happening to you?
My answer: A third party digital storage site.
I have my photos scanned (for the older ones) and backed up but I also have them duplicated on a large third party vendor (who shall remain nameless – I am not about endorsements) so in the event of a natural disaster, such as a large earthquake, I have my photos and scans of my children’s artwork preserved electronically on a server in some other state.
I really grappled with putting the images on their servers because there is a question of ownership and privacy… but you can put the images to “private” for your use only. I also don’t buy into the conspiracy that the large “storage” companies are trying to steal your images for their own copyright.
What do I recommend? Find what works for you.
There are large services that provide cloud drives for free (up to a certain amount of storage space) and then there is the annual fee for larger quantities in the even you take many photos of family and friends. Read the terms and conditions and look up customer reviews for the service before you decide.
Ok, I know I said I don’t like to mention companies…. But I will mention this one (no money or endorsement fee was exchanged here)… if you have many older family photos before digital was mainstream… try ScanMyPhotos.com (http://www.scanmyphotos.com/) . I sent them a few boxes of photos (probably 1K+ and they sent me back the originals neatly packed and a disk with everything scanned… Love this service.)
Prepare for the worst and hope for the best… but please save those images and back them up. It may take some set up time but in the event of an emergency… I promise you will either wish you had or be glad that you did.
Take control of your family archives before disaster strikes.