Tuesday, February 3, 2009


Today I worked on an entry for my new column over at Digital Genealogist magazine (it will debut in March 2009), and I was writing about flash drives when I came upon this revelation: if I were to lose my flash drive, how would someone know to return it to me?

As you know, flash drives are small data storage devices that can hang on a key chain or slipped into a pocket.  These gadgets have the ability to not only store several gigabytes of valuable data, but they can also be "tricked out" to include applications even operating systems.

Losing a flash drive that you depend on day-in and day-out would be devasting, wouldn't it?  Have you considered placing "if found" or "ICE" information on the device for others to easily find?

I first came across the ICE concept when programming my new cell phone: a friend had suggested I create an "In Case of Emergency" contact on my phone with information on who to contact in case I was injured in an accident or if my phone were lost and later found.

Well I've taken that idea one step further and placed a simple .txt format file on both my external drive and my flash drive with basic ICE type information.  This way if I lose either, hopefully someone will be able to see the file (placed on the top-level directory of course) and contact me.

Another tip: if you use some sort of data encryption or password protection, make sure that the .txt file lies outside of that protection.

1 comment:

M. Diane Rogers said...

Good idea - this could work for computers, etc.

For lost cameras, now there is: Found Cameras and Orphan Pictures

Maybe someone will start something for lost flash drives too?

Thank you, Photojojo, for this link.