Data corruption is the accidental modification of a file or the loss of information that usually occurs during reading or writing. The reason may be hardware or software malfunction, and for that reason, a file can become partially or completely corrupted, so it'll no longer function correctly because its bits will be scrambled or missing. An image file, for example, will no longer display a real image, but a random combination of colors, an archive will be impossible to unpack for the reason that its content will be unreadable, etcetera. When such a problem appears and it isn't found by the system or by an admin, the data will be corrupted silently and in case this happens on a drive that is a part of a RAID array where the information is synchronized between various different drives, the corrupted file will be replicated on all of the other drives and the damage will become long term. Numerous popular file systems either don't feature real-time checks or do not have good ones that will detect a problem before the damage is done, so silent data corruption is a common matter on hosting servers where substantial volumes of data are stored.