Data recovery companies are opening new clean room facilities across Australia to take advantage of what they see as a burgeoning market for hard disk repairs and data retrieval.
Adrian Briscoe, general manager at Ontrack Data Recovery, said the data recovery firm was launching its first "clean room" laboratory in Australia. The new lab would be in Brisbane and the firm aimed to boost its staff from two to have six staff there by the end of the year.
He said Ontrack had sent its Australian customers' products to the US for repairs or data recovery for the last decade, working through some 315 partners. That process had meant a five to seven day turnaround time, he said.
"Brisbane is our eighteenth location [globally]," Briscoe said. "We've been experiencing 10 to 15 percent growth globally per year."
Ontrack Data Recovery is a US-based subsidiary of global risk consultancy Kroll. Opening an Australian laboratory meant customers would enjoy a 24-hour turnaround time and help Ontrack expand further on the back of expected growth in the data recovery market, Briscoe said.
"In legal firms [for instance], 90 percent of transaction now are created electronically and never migrate to paper," he said.
An increase in electronic documentation without paper backup and new regulatory pressures and risks meant more businesses might get into trouble if their hard disks failed. Organisations increasingly needed to recover data that had accidentally been lost or damaged, Briscoe said.
The new lab would not alter Ontrack's reseller relationships. It would be good for partners' businesses, he said.
"We basically assist our partners. They refer the job to us," Briscoe said. "I think it will benefit our partners because now they will have a robust service on their doorstep and get results quicker."
Ontrack, which had vendor agreements with "all four or five major brands", could also often open hard disks and recover files without voiding warranty, Briscoe added.
Payam Toloo, director at Payam Data Recovery, said his five-year-old company was also expanding in Australia.
He said it had opened a new data recovery lab in Melbourne in June. Payam planned to open more data recovery labs, in Queensland and Western Australia, by the third quarter of 2006.
"They specialise in recovering data from faulty or damaged hard disk drives. Ninety percent of our clients are computer resellers in Sydney and Melbourne at the moment," Toloo said.
"All our hard disk repairs are done in our class-100 clean room facilities."