How secure is iNaturalist data in the event of a catastrophe?

What measures are in place to conserve iNaturalist’s observations and identifications in the event of a catastrophe, such as:

  • A server breakdown due to software error, ageing hardware, natural disaster, cyberattack, etc.
  • The liquidation of iNaturalist due to funding cuts, loss of user engagement, or some other unforeseen reason.

These are uncomfortable but important scenarios to prepare for. Is everything backed-up regularly on secure hard-drives? If so, would iNaturalist be able to be restored from such a backup if necessary? If iNaturalist ceases to exist, would the data be able (both technically and legally) to be imported into an alternative scheme?


I think there’s pretty frequent backups based on other threads I’ve read. I’ve had concerns about this too, though. Especially because my iNaturalist-obsessed son is a lot more likely to see things to the end than I would be. The future is a scary thing but I agree that it’s best to discuss it rather than avoid it.


These old related threads might be of interest:


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