If you are a photographer, your memory cards with data on them are the most important item. Camera gear can be replaced but memory cards with someone’s wedding photos on them? You’re in BIG trouble if you lose them.
While shooting, I recommend doing these two things:
1. Carry your memory cards on you (literally) at all times.
When I am shooting, I carry my memory cards in a Lowepro Memory Card Wallet that attaches to my belt.
If I am not wearing a belt, I wear a fanny pack and put the memory card wallet in there.
One time while doing an engagement session, I put the memory cards in my pocket. By the end of the shoot, I reached inside my pocket and they were missing! I ran back to the location we were shooting and was LUCKY to find that they had fallen out and no one had picked them up. Learning lesson: Strap your memory cards on you, tight!
2. Back up your cards as you shoot.
Many dSLR cameras have two memory card slots now for backup. If yours does not, while shooting, as each memory card fills up with data, back it up to a laptop. If you don’t have time then do it AS SOON as you are done shooting.
I heard of someone photographing a wedding in Hawaii. They left full memory cards in their hotel room and when they returned, the room had been robbed. They didn’t back up their files, so the wedding photos were gone.
I have photo files in 3 different places before the photos are delivered to the client: 1. On the card. 2. On a hard drive at home. 3. On a hard drive at my studio. After photos are edited they are uploaded to my Dropbox.
Memory cards with data on them are IRREPLACEABLE, so do everything you can to take care of them.