I have a few HDDs which contain backup data. I want to store them in a secure place. I know some good practices like storing them in a different building so if there is, let's say, a fire, you can still restore the data. But I am more concerned in the degradation of the HDDs, for example by humidity. Should I store them in a plastic bag? Is there any special way to store the HDDs so they can not be damaged by the enviroment?

  • 2
    Given options of cloud backup and magnetic tape, I don't think hard drives should be a first choice for disaster recovery. It like storing milk instead of water for emergencies at home; water you can just keep anywhere anyhow where milk you have to keep it cold and it goes "bad much faster than water. Hard drives do not store as well even if you you go through the trouble and go "bad" faster than tapes or cloud storage. This is aside from the fact the HDD's can be expensive compared to other options when you have that many copies of data.
    – Damon
    Jan 14 '17 at 20:59

I agree that a NAS is always the best answer for external storage. If you truly want "Off site", I would recommend a safe deposit box. If you are looking to store this long term and only touch it in the event of a catastrophic event, you could use a zip lock bag or even vacuum seal it before storing it in the safe deposit box. If you use any sort of on site media rated (class 125) safe, you will need to include some sort of desiccant in that safe to keep the humidity to a minimum.

Another lower budget option that is accessible would be to put a NAS in a different physical building with a network connection that is either fiber or point to point wireless.


For the case, I see it would be beneficial to consider 3-2-1 rule with RTO and RPO in order to get planned Backup and DR sites.

For a backup and DR boxes, I am using 2x Synology, so I can suggest you to take a look what they got. Veeam Backup software is used to backup/move data to backup NAS and then to DR one (that is in other building).

I found the hardware solution from aclouda that seems to be more beneficial for your caser. I see it allows to use cloud storage as local SCSI drive thus it allows to run backup jobs to cloud as it would be local drive.


Hard disk isn't designed to store data for some reasonably long period of time. For vaulting you need disk -> tape and use something like Iron Mountain and similar services. Companies who need to mess with regulatory requirements do this for years.


Don't store your backups in off-site hard drives. That sounds like a dangerous and inefficient way to store off-site backups.

I'd store your on-site backup on a professional NAS or SAN with disks in RAID (based on whatever you can afford) and then use a cloud service for off-site storage. A cloud provider like Backblaze (no, I'm not affiliated with them in any way) is really quite a cheap way to store an off-site backup when you consider the costs of purchase hard disks, upgrade, and maintenance. You would just upload your off-site backups.

Should you stick with hard drives off-site, store them the way they should be stored, in an off-site server in a RAID configuration and upload to that from your primary site. Moving mechanical disks on a regular basis isn't a good idea.

  • 1
    I was thinking about it. I will probably go for a NAS, even though this is for a really really small company. Anyways I think the question could be interesting for people who just want to store their personal backups in a secure way.
    – user395136
    Jan 14 '17 at 13:46
  • Yeah, I think it's an interesting question for small business too (I up-voted it). Look at a QNAP or something for off-site backups if required. They are reasonably reliable and cheap for small business. If you can justify the expense you should aim for raid 6, raid 5 if you can't justify the expense. In all honesty though, cloud off-site backups are probably even cheaper than a cheap off-site NAS. Jan 14 '17 at 14:32
  • 1
    I know companies that store their backups on magnetic tapes which they store off-site. Thought it's worth to be mentioned.
    – Alex
    Jan 14 '17 at 18:19
  • In today's RAID environment never do RAID 5 or 6. RAID 10 is the only way to go. If you cannot afford 4 or more drives, RAID 1 will do but is not as reliable. With the larger size hard drives out now RAID 5 is too dangerous to use considering the rebuild time.
    – NOW-Admin
    Jan 18 '17 at 19:30

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy