In Search Of Fireproof/Waterproof Backup

Every year or two, I like to audit how I backup and store my data. I’ve got a pretty good routine of backing up my hard drive for my primary and secondary computers. It’s part of my weekly routine. I also remotely backup some files just in case of a site compromising situation (fire, flood, theft). I’d like to continue that process to move my primary backups to something more secure for site compromising situations. Remote backups either need physical transportation, or adequate bandwidth, both of which are limiting and not exactly cost efficient. I’d like to bypass that.

I’m aware of but not really fond of iosafe’s line of fire/water proof hard drives because it’s a high investment in 1 drive. This doesn’t seem very practical to me in the long run as data storage needs change and drives get bigger/faster. I also don’t need that level of simplicity. I just want someplace safe to store backups.

What I’m really looking for is a lockbox style safe that meets the following requirements:

  • Just large enough to hold 1-2 3.5″ hard drive enclosures.
  • Fireproof and Waterproof
  • UL 125 rated for 1 hr or more.
  • Solid locking mechanism and hinges that can handle many cycles. Combo is preferred since keys either get lost, or leaving them in the lock results in them getting bent.

There doesn’t seem to be anything on the market that meets these seemingly simple requirements. Almost everything in this size range (which isn’t much) is UL 125 for 30 minutes at best. Reviews for everything in this class is very mixed regarding the quality of the hinges and locking mechanism. Truthfully I’d rather no lock and reliable opening/closing than a failed lock. Unless all computers are physically secured in a safe, it’s false security anyway. USB pass-through isn’t ideal either since who wants to keep something like this that close to their desk and not in a closet or someplace more convenient?

Oh yea, I’d also like to keep this somewhat economical. Truthfully a safe/lockbox of this size generally is, though they don’t meet the other two requirements. I’d be curious if anyone has found something that meets all my requirements. I can’t be the first to go down this path. Maybe I’m just the first who wants to do it right and doesn’t want a 300 lb walk-in safe.

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