Recover the Data from Liquid and Water Damaged Phones

Data Clinic recover the data from a lot of liquid and water damaged phones – see https://www.dataclinic.co.uk/data-recovery-from-liquid-and-water-damaged-phones/. This is often a complex task, far beyond what a high street phone repair shop is capable of. Here’s an example enquiry from someone with a water damaged phone.

Recovering data from water damaged phones“I have a Huawei P30 phone with a cracked screen and water damage. I can tell the phone is still working because I can see the Bluetooth is on and there I vibrations. So it might just need a new screen. But the main thing is if replacing the screen doesn’t work then I want to be able to recover the data from it.”

Water damage to a phone will frequently cause the screen to stop working. A simple fix that many people think of using is to change the screen, but this does not usually work. The faulty screen is just a symptom of the problem (water damage) rather than the problem itself. So by changing the screen you’re not actually doing anything to fix the problem.

To recover the data from a phone that has come into contact with liquid it’s usually necessary to dismantle to phone and take it apart. This is because we need to get access to the motherboard, components and the NAND memory that holds the data. Sending in a water damaged phone for recovery means that you will not get back a working phone. The data will be successfully extracted to a memory stick with specific folders – eg. photos, contacts, videos etc, but the phone will be returned to you in pieces.

The cost of recovering the data from a liquid damged phone is roughly £300 – £400. Expect the pay an upfront fee too which pays for the technicians time to find, trace and rectify faults on the phone and obtain a file list which will be emailed to you for approval.

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Data not on external hard drive and iPhone stuck on Apple Symbol

In this post we discuss what to do when data on an external Seagate hard drive doesn’t show up and what do do about wet iPhones that are stuck on the Apple symbol or in boot loop

Data not backed up on external hard drive

I’m in Belfast and my Seagate Barracuda 1TB internal hard drive which has about 150MB of data on it. Most of the data was backed up on an external hard drive, but there is 10 folders containing about 25MB of Photos and Videos of my Father (since deceased) which were not backed up and are specifically treasured that I would like recovering. Drive has developed a mechanical failure which started with high pitched whistling and then after turning off the power, now just a clicking sounding coming from the drive.

In this example the hard drive has a mechanical fault, a physical problem – the giveaway symptom is the clicking sound. To get the data off of this drive it’s necessary to replace the heads, so it needs to go to a data recovery company that has a clean room. There is no point looking for software, the drive has physical damage and this has to be repaired before the data can be extracted. If you’d like us to recover the data please bring your hard drive into The Mount business centre in Belfast.

iPhone got Wet, now doesn’t recognise

I have an iPhone 6s that was left in my pocket when I went in the swimming pool on holiday last year. Obviously the iPhone got rather wet, I tried to dry it out best I could at the time and when I got home it did recognise on iTunes. But since the screen didn’t display I couldn’t enter my passcode. I tried several softwares to get round this but didn’t work. Then it stopped recognising on iTunes. I have since replaced the screen and battery and tried a different charging cable (not fitted in phone) but nothing. When I test over the battery terminals on the logic board I get 0.3MOhms. I live in Leicester and have a new phone and only want my data (pictures etc) off the phone as my little girls baby pictures are on the phone and I don’t have copies.  I know there is a data recovery centre at Rutland House on Friar Lane in Leicester, could I call in ??

iPhone stuck on Apple logo

iPhone stuck on Apple symbol

My iPhone is stuck on the apple symbol and will not turn on. I’ve tried connecting it to iTunes and putting it into recovery mode and updating the software but it did not work. I do not want to restore the phone as I do not have all the photos and videos backed up. I think that the reason that this has happened was that my phone was completely full and had no storage left so it was struggling to function. I was planning on backing it up and deleting files to free up storage but hadn’t got round to doing so before this happened. I would like to get the photos and videos (and messages etc) off of the phone if possible.

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Retrieve and Recovering Data

In this post we look at retrieving and recovering the data from a variety of devices.

Retrieve data from a Disabled iPhone

My late wife’s iphone has been inadvertently disabled by me and Apple say that I cannot get the data [I only want to see if there are any photographs] without a court order. Is it possible to see the photographs?

Recovering an old hard drive – London

I have an old (1999) hard drive which broke down about 13 years ago. I makes a clicking noise when trying to load. I was wondering if you could try to attempt to recover the data that’s on it please and how much would that cost? I am in central London, near Lombard Street.
IBM Travelstar
Model: DARA-212000
12.07GB ATA/IDE

Travelstar DARA212000

Data recovery SD card

I was wondering if you could help me. Basically my camera SD card when I was viewing photos suddenly stopped working. It just stopped. I then took it out and put it back in, nothing changed. It also won’t let me take any photos on my camera as it says ‘memory card cannot be used’ and asks me to format it -which I have read mostly erases your data which I clearly don’t want to do! But my computer will not recognise even the Nikon SD card when it is in the drive. I am very worried I for no apparent reason have lost all my memories. So I feel naturally very stuck and worried. I think I read you do SD cards? If so, if you could advise me on what to do next and where you are located that would be very helpful.

Recover files from USB stick
My computer is not able to read my USB Stick, I think the stick’s plug might be damaged.

Retrieve data from OnePlus 5T

OnePlus 5T with broken screen, cannot see anything. Phone otherwise working normally. I want to recover photos and other data, not having any luck with downloaded recovery software.

Rescue lost RAID files

We have a 4 drive RAID array on a NAS box and one has failed and the array has failed with it, windows is detecting the drive is there but cannot access the files.
The drive is 4tb and we are looking for a general quote for how much it would cost to recover from the dead drive, we are aware which drive has failed in the array.

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Data Recovery Service

Here are some enquiries for a data recovery service. All the enquiries relate to getting data off of hard drives in RAID servers and mobile phones, and originate from the UK, with a focus on London.

RAID and server data recovery in London – use Data Clinic, 68 Lombard Street, EC3V 9LJ
https://www.dataclinic.co.uk/london-data-recovery/

RAID Data Recovery

I have a Dell PowerEdge 4x2tb RAID 5 server running Linux. All the drives are working but the server has been water damaged. Is it possible to still recover the data from this? The RAID contains work documents and I’m looking for a RAID data recovery service in London.

Recover Files from RAID London

I have a RAID 5 NAS hard drive which was partitioned into several network shares. I wanted to format one of the partitions but made a error and the wrong partition. I recovered all of the files using RAID software but none of them open. All the files were there and the file sizes look right however nothing opens. They are video and audio files. It’s a RAID 5 with 6 disks running Windows. I believe I’ve got the striping and parity wrong. In hindsight I shouldn’t have attempted it myself as I didn’t know what I was doing, but now I really need the data, I hope I haven’t messed up – can you help ? Can I bring the whole server or just the hard drives to the Data Clinic office on Lombard Street.

Dropped my WD My Passport Ultra harddrive off my desk, light still flashes, makes running noises, but not showing up on my Mac. Just want to have data saved and put onto my other hard drive. I want a data recovery service to rescue my lost files so I can store them on a central RAID.

Device power was pulled early from a RAID 5 in a data centre in Slough. Since then the array is not recognised. Initially i thought it could be a hardware problem, but now I think it’s a problem with the data. I’m close to London and need a data recovery service.

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Mortgage Advisor Manchester Broker

In this article we discuss how to save money when applying for a mortgage. Here are some links that cover mortgage brokering and advice in and around the Greater Manchester area. We recently collaborated with Manchester Mortgages on a data recovery job where they had lost access to their files.

Greater Manchester

One thing about Manchester is that it’s a big place with lots of available houses to rent or buy. So the above links cover buy to let, remortgaging, home movers and first time buyers as well. When seeking a mortgage always look at the interest rate you are being quoted, just a small difference in the percentages can amount to a lot of money over a typically 25 year mortgage duration.

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Phone and File Recovery in London, Birmingham and Leicester

Here are some recent hard drive and phone recovery questions from London, Birmingham and Leicester.

Lacie Hard Drive Recovery London

My Laice (Lacie) external harddrive stopped working altogether – was not recognised at all by my computer and wasn’t making any sound. On inspection by a data recovery service in London I could see that the USB port seemed to be slightly bent. I opened up the drive to inspect and found that the circuit connection around the USB was damaged and had come undone. I can’t see any other obvious form of visible damage to the circuit or drive (it has been stored carefully in a drawer, hasn’t been dropped or anything) and wonder if it would be possible for you to take a look at this to see if the data can be salvaged from the drive itself? Many thanks for your help.

Retrieve Files from a Western Digital Passport

Windows no longer recognises the drive. Try to see further details in dskmgmt but drive is unitialized which can’t be done as it says due to “fatal device hardware error“. I desperately need to retrieve the folders and files from this hard drive.

broken hard drive

Recover External USB Hard Drive in Birmingham

I live in Birmingham and my USB hard drive has stopped working and i am unable to retrieve all the files on the USB. I am looking to recover the files and was hoping that this was possible with your companies help. The external hard drive just stopped working and it wasn’t in contact with any water or smashed or anything like that. As i insert the USB cable in the computer the device does not pop up on the computer.

Getting Pictures saved to Google Photos Back

I’m looking to recover some videos taken a week ago. I thought they were uploaded to Google photos (they were showing) and was running out of space so I deleted them. But they disappeared. There is 1 video we are really upset to have lost. Any chance you could have a look?

Recover Google Pixel Phone Leicester

I have a google pixel phone which suddenly got stuck on the loading menu. I have come to understand that this has been a outcome for many users when updating their phones and there has been no solution except a factory reset. I have many photographs and videos I wish to retrieve so have not hard reset my phone. I was wondering if I could please get a quote with how much roughly it would cost to retrieve all photographs and videos from a mobile in this sort of state.
Also apologies as due to the issue with my phone the only way I can currently be contacted is via email. I look forward to hearing back from you, I am in Leicester

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Forensic Phone Data Recovery – Legal Cases

Recovering the data from a mobile phone is often crucial in any type of legal case. Usually recovering this data is straightforward as the phone is working, but sometimes data may have been deliberately deleted or hidden, and other times the phone may have been deliberately smashed or broken in an attempt to stop anyone accessing the data on it.

We are frequently asked if it’s possible to recover information like text (SMS) messages and WhatsApp messages from phones where the messages have been deleted or lost. This is usually possible so long as the delete messages have not been overwritten. If the information is still on the phone we should be able to recover it regardless of the phone make and model.

forensic damaged phone data recovery (police and legal)A further complication comes if we are asked to recover information from a deliberately damaged or broken mobile phone. This presents the added complication that we first have to repair the phone before we can begin to locate the data to be recovered. Again, it should be possible, but it obviously depends on how damaged the phone is.

In this photo of a Samsung S9, the phone had been seized at a crime scene by the police who (unsurprisingly seeing the phone’s condition) had not be able to recover any data from it. The phone had been run over in a car and both sides were smashed. Fortunately the damaged phone came to us and we were able to successfully recover the data from it.

The most common types of data we are requested to recover from mobile and smartphones are

  • Text and WhatsApp messages
  • Diary dates and times
  • Location data
  • Photos and videos
  • Internet histories

Some further reading:
Phone data recovery – More about Data Clinic’s general phone data recovery
Forensic data recovery – Details of Data Clinic’s advanced and forensic data recovery capabilities
Forensic data investigation – Further information about forensic data recovery and how it all works legally

 

 

 

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UnRAID data recovery

2x unraid Hard drives from different PC’s
Systems have been re-imaged.
We would like to recover Word and Excel files from these HDD’s pre re-imaging.

Hard drive damaged and important data is on drive. WD 100GB approximately.

I have deleted my audio records by mistake and would like to recover them

Unraid data recovery is provided in the uk by data clinic ltd

I have a 1 TB Seagate external hard drive that failed during operation. It Suddenly stopped working while watching a movie from it.
It now clicks / beeps continuously but does not mount on any computer.
The outer plastic case has been opened to plug the hard drive into a dock with no success, but the actual hard drive itself has not been opened.
Based on your standard service how much will data recovery cost?

I have a 1 TB Seagate external hard drive that failed during operation. It Suddenly stopped working while watching a movie from it.
It now clicks / beeps continuously but does not mount on any computer.
The outer plastic case has been opened to plug the hard drive into a dock with no success, but the actual hard drive itself has not been opened.
Based on your standard service how much will data recovery cost?

Seagate st31000340ns, appears in bios but not found when in my computer, occasionally shows up but won’t even show size if drive, in running windows 7 , disc is spinning,

I have a Lacie 5big 25TB Raid 0 drive, the unit has stopped powering up, I tried a seperate power supply and still nothing. Could you fix the unit so I can access the data or recover the data from each HDD seperately.

I built an unRAID setup with 2x2TB st31000340ns drives some years ago and went to move to a new system and believe i formatted the drives.

I have a hard drive that I took out the Pc, I believe it’s a Sata 40 or 44pin. I tried turning it on with an adapter but it doesn’t make a clicking noise to show that it’s working, nothing happens nor does it register on autoplay. Could you kindly let me know whether it could be fix and how much I would be paying roughly.

my WD external drive stopped working after I unplugged it without safe remote. After the incident, the computer cannot identify the drive.

My HDD seems to be dead it worked fine one moment and is now not turning I was just wondering if you could recover the two user areas that are stored on the HDD & at what cost it would be to myself.

Seagate 1TB internal HDD, approx four years old. PC failed to restart after Windows 10 update with boot record error. No strange noises from drive, recognised when connected to second PC but states requires formatting. Running CHKDSK reports that the contents are in RAW format. Can you help?

Looking for quote to recover data from a Seagate ST2000DM001 that failed suddenly with a mechanical fault. Drive not recognised through the BIOS and is clacking on power up.

I have a 2Tb WD My Passport external drive that has been dropped from about 3 feet onto carpet. When you connect to a computer it makes several beeps and stops, tries to spin again and makes more beeps. Is this something that you can recover data from and to what cost please?

Dropped my 2TB Seagate external hard drive (bought this year) from about 3ft onto a hard wooden floor. Now sounds like there is loose material inside it. When plugged into laptop I hear a USB recognition noise, additionally I can see the drive under disc drives within Device manger but I cannot access any of its content. I want to recover the data from the unraid system that I setup. It makes a qiuet regular beeping noise when plugged into my laptop. Contains a lot of personally important holiday photos and videos.

My Maxtor Diamondmax 22 STM3500… does not register in the BIOS anymore. I cannot extract any of my data. I switched the sata cables. Checked if everything was in the correct place. Nothing helps. The HDD seems to make the usual sounds, nothing out of the ordinary….except that the desktop computer does not see the harddrive. (all IDE’s are zero in the BIOS) With a sata – usb converter the harddisk still does not register. My laptop (on which I connected the harddrive via converter) does not even ‘notice’ any new device.

I have a western digital, my passport drive. It stopped working, I’ve had a look online, taken the drive back off and it looks as though the heads are stuffed.
Are you open tomorrow? Saturday to take a look? I could nip over to Northampton, I’m just over Coventry way.

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How we do a ‘Chip-Off’ Forensic Data Recovery on a Mobile Phone

Forensic data recovery and mobile phone investigation is the process of salvaging data from failed storage devices such as mobile phones or hard drives. We offer our services across a wide range of devices. Here we will look at our mobile phone side of the company, more specifically what is known as a chip-off operation. Chip off is a useful technique especially in forensic data recovery, also known as digital discovery, or eDiscovery: these are methods of data investigation used by police forces and insurance underwriters. Data Clinic Ltd are experts in recovering data from damaged phones and hard drives.

With any mobile phone or tablet, we initially attempt to inspect the phone, we determine if the failure is with the peripheral components such as batteries, charging ports and screens. If this is the case, then we wouldn’t need to go any further. For a lot of ediscovery data investigations cases however, this option serves as a process of elimination and if this first attempt of recovering the data is unsuccessful then we look at the more advanced options available to us. This is typically in the form of advanced micro soldering, JTAG or a Chip-Off operation.

So, what is a ‘Chip-Off’?

A Chip-off is the process of de-soldering the Flash Memory chip from the failed phone / tablet in the hope that we will successfully read its raw data independent of the device.

How do we do a Chip-Off recovery?

In order to complete a forensic data recovery on a mobile phone it’s first necessary to determine that a Chip-Off on a phone / tablet is needed then the next step is preparation. The phone must be fully dismantled, including the removal of any protective metal heat shields. When this is done we identify the eMMC (or NAND) memory chip place the PCB into a special holder underneath our stereo microscope as shown here.

What is now needed to remove any underfill from around the memory chip and add specialist flux to the chip. The Flux we typically use is Amtech Tacky Flux – the idea with this is to dispense it all around the chip then apply heat to it.

The main heat application we use is a Quick 861DA heat gun (image below). This is a station that offers a wide range of options when it comes to applying heat. We make sure to select a correct temperature, airflow and nozzle to do the job properly.

Once the chip has been lifted from the board after carefully applying the correct amount of heat we get the de-soldered chip, we then proceed to cleaning and re-balling the chip. This is a meticulous process whereby we need to ensure that each of the 100+ solder contacts have clean solder. It is a manual process that you need skill in precision soldering and a keen eye under the microscope to do.

Once each pin has been successfully and soldered in a uniform manner, it is time to clean it up with specialist chemical solutions. This ensures that the contacts are as clean as they can be and thus the read of the chip should also be good!

There are a lot of readers and programmers available worldwide that you can use to read the raw data of an eMMC NAND memory chip. The honest answer is they all have different capabilities for different chips. Its not a case of one is the best. Here are some samples of these available ‘boxes’. When it comes to data discovery and mobile phone investigation the phone data is fully dumped to a binary image file, we then analyse and decode the raw data. Once reconstructed we can send our customer a summary to let them know the recovery statistics as shown below.

This data can then easily be transferred to another storage device (typically a memory stick) and returned to the customer.

To Summarise

A chip-off is one of the procedures that really is a last resort. Chip-off cases are applicable when:

  • The logic board is too severely damaged to repair

  • ediscovery / digital discovery / forensic phone data recovery is required.
  • The lock on a phone if it is not known and there is no method of bypassing it via software

  • Corrosion cannot be decontaminated

  • For deleted data

The art of performing a chip-off is something that we pride ourselves on being able to achieve, we have recovered the data from many phones where this was the only option and are still carrying out these procedures today.

You can find Data Clinic at The Pavilions, Bridge Hall Lane, Bury, Greater Manchester BL9 7NX

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Digital Evidence Investigation – Data Recovery and E-Discovery

As more of our lives are stored digitally, so more of this digital information is often seen as evidence. Maybe a phone contains images from a crime scene, or perhaps a hard drive contains an important email that warrants a forensic investigation of the data. One term for this is forensic data recovery.

Most data recovery companies are able to examine data forensically. Digital evidence examination basically looks at the data on a digital storage device in an attempt to discover if there is any pertinent information detailing illegal activity.

Enquiries for e-discovery (or ‘data discovery’) as it is widely known vary. Here are a few examples from clients wanting a forensic examination of their hard drives and mobile phones.

Linux ext4 formatted 2TB WD HDD that is fairly new. Will not initialise or mount. Has 1TB of films I need back as the online backup has, incredibly, failed at the same time. I have a spare drive to move the data to. I’m interested in having this data examined forensically – I think the phrase is e-discovery or examination of digital evidence.

My Seagate External Hard drive has stopped working, and the light will not light up. However it does ask for me to initialize the disk, and makes a clicking, beeping noise.

Over christmas I took a lot of video footage on my phone to make into a short movie – i put my SD card into my laptop and transferred the videos onto my desktop or iCloud, i also made folders for them on my SD card, now when i came to open the folder it has turned into an exec file which now it won’t open my videos and i fear i may have lost them! i tried to download a free software to try recover the data but it only recovered the audio and even then it was broken, i believe that the footage is still there i just need a way to bring it back, now my Mac is not recognising my SD and i don’t want to keep trying unless i cause further damage. It is only now that I realise that some of the footage may contain digital evidence of wrong doing and it may be necessary to reproduce this in a legal case. What facilities exist to examine the hard drive, SD card and phone forensically? Can you examine each of them and produce a forensic report as the what activity has taken place on each?

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