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Pros / SalvageData's customer service is among the best we tested.

Cons / This company's ISO 5 certification, posted on its website, is outdated.

 Verdict / SalvageData Recovery provides a quick and painless evaluation process. It has attentive, consistent customer service. Its cleanroom and data security and privacy controls are certified by a third party.

TopTenREVIEWS - Silver Award - Awarded for excellence in design, usability and feature set

Salvaging critical data from a damaged hard drive is stressful and expensive. SalvageData Recovery makes the process stress-free by providing excellent customer service, a detailed free evaluation and comprehensive data recovery features that include DIY software for logical recoveries.

Not only are its technicians extremely successful at recovering data from a damaged hard drive, but it is SSAE SOC 3 certified, so you don't have to worry about your sensitive files falling into the wrong hands.

For these reasons, SalvageData Recovery earns our Top Ten Reviews Silver Award as one of the best hard drive recovery service.

  • Customer-Service Consistency
  1. The score of the customer service's consistency from anonymous tests.
    % (Higher is Better)
  2. 2  SalvageData Recovery
    95.0 %
  3. 95.0 %
  4. 75.0 %
  5. Category Average
    80.0 %

Hard Drive Evaluation

SalvageData Recovery has one of the best customer service teams among the data recovery services we reviewed. The service scored 95% in our Customer Service Consistency test. For this test, we asked SalvageData reps a series of questions, which we posed through anonymous emails, phone calls and live chat. Then we compared the various responses to determine how knowledgeable the reps were and how consistent the information was among the different representatives. SalvageData's representatives provided consistent information, though some of our questions did go unanswered.

This hard drive recovery service offers a free, in-lab evaluation of your damaged drive for free. The evaluation takes between one and two business days and includes a full diagnostic report with the estimated recovery costs. You're given an estimate invoice that has a line-by-line itemization of the costs. This detailed estimate is important, because you should never approve the recovery unless you know exactly what you're paying for and why.

Recovery Service

One of the most critical features of SalvageData is its certified ISO 5 Class 100 cleanroom. A cleanroom is essential when recovering data from a damaged hard drive because the platters that contain recorded data are extremely sensitive. It's far too common for hard drive recovery services to claim to have an ISO 5 Class 100 cleanroom when, in fact, it's not certified, and it's not a dedicated room but a workstation.

You can find the ISO certificate on SalvageData's website. The service claims that the cleanroom is certified annually, but the certificate on the website lists a date of Sept. 17, 2012. It's entirely possible, and even likely, that the website hasn't been updated yet with the most recent certification.

SalvageData Recovery can recover files from all types of media and operating systems. The service can also perform on-site and remote recoveries, which is when a technician accesses your computer through an internet connection to perform logical (where there is nothing physically wrong with your hard drive) recoveries. You can also purchase DIY recovery software, which is for logical recoveries.

The estimated turnaround time is four to five business days. This is only a minor drawback. As with all HDD recovery services, you can pay extra for emergency or express recoveries if you need your data quicker.


SalvageData Recovery is one of the few hard drive recovery services to carry a SSAE 16 SOC 3 report of its data privacy and security protocols. A SOC 3 report is for public use and is the highest level of security certification a data center can receive.

This is a remarkable achievement for an organization. SalvageData adheres to strict security protocols that regulate both facility and computer access. Employees who have access to the cleanrooms are thoroughly screened before they are hired. The audit is performed by a third party annually.

The premises are under full surveillance. All of the rooms use biometric locks, which both track and control access to sensitive areas. All recovered data is automatically encrypted using 256-bit encryption, and technicians are forbidden from opening and browsing client files. The hard drives are fully tracked and are destroyed once the information has been retrieved. You can trust this service with your sensitive files.

Help & Support

This company offers an unparalleled level of customer service. We were impressed with the personal connection company representatives strive to make with every customer. This personalized help is something most other hard drive recovery services lack, and it can both helpful and reassuring when you're in a stressful situation, such as losing your business's data. 

Since data loss doesn't always occur between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., SalvageData provides 24-hour assistance. The company also has a self-service portal online, where you can log in and track your case. Cases are updated every 24 hours.


SalvageData Recovery is a definite leader in the hard drive recovery service industry. It provides the expertise and personalized attention that catastrophic data loss requires. Moreover, its verifiable certifications, including its ISO 5 cleanroom certification and SSAE SOC 3, can help assure you receive a high level of service and that your data is protected. No hard drive recovery service is 100% effective, but SalvageData Recovery comes close.

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