Data corruption is as old a concept as is record-keeping itself.
Four thousand years ago, Sumerian businesses kept their inventory and transaction records on clay tablets, but even clay tablets could break, or (if they weren't fired) crumble or get water- damaged.
Unfortunately, there are even more ways for computer data to become corrupted. But there are also more ways to prevent (or recover from) damage to your records.
What causes data corruption, and what can be done to prevent it?
Electrical power trouble is the main cause of data corruption. Use power line conditioning to prevent this problem.
User error can be avoided with proper training to ensure Clerks enter data accurately. User errors are a major cause of data "corruption."
Faulty cables should be replaced. Bad cables are a fairly common cause of data corruption.
Computer hardware problems should be resolved. Failing hardware is a fairly common cause of data corruption.
Computer viruses must be prevented through the use of virus-protection software. Viruses can cause large- scale data corruption.
Software errors should be immediately reported to the software vendor but only very rarely cause data corruption.
No matter what may cause data corruption problems, the first line of defense is to always and regularly back up data files.