Written by:Driper
Monday, November 24, 2008 

People often assume that their safe will protect data on their tapes (say a backup of their server). This is not so much a myth but an assumption many people make without any basis.

Generally most people purchase a safe to store their data without really paying to much attention to the specifications of the safe. They make the assumption that the safe will protect their data tapes just as well as they will protect paper. This is a fatal mistake.


Safes have a rating according to what they will hold. On the opposite side of this issue different materials will be damaged (melt, burn or be effected by smoke) at different levels.


Without going into to much details in order to protect your data on tapes or other removable media that will typically have a maximum acceptable temperature of around 60 degrees Centigrade will need to be stored in a safe rated as a 120 data safe (or Swedish NT Fire 017-120 Diskette Standard). These safes will typically have two doors meaning you have a safe in a safe. They will typically have a dust seal on the inner safe in order to prevent smoke etc from entering the safe.


In fairness a small fire that doesn't produce to much smoke or burn to long around the safe then your probably be OK with a standard safe but at the end of the day what is your data work? 


All this ignores the obvious question (why are your tapes stored on site in the first place?)