Data lost after long time storage

I bought my first My Passport Wireless 500gb on December 2015, only to be used for a 17 days motorbike trip in South America following the Dakar Race. I returned home with my WD hdd totally full of videos from multiple gopros.
I stored it in a drawer of my desk untill today - 3.5 years later - without using it or turning it on.
I firstly fully recharged it and then connected to my Windows laptop, then the classic message to REPAIR DRIVE came on and I clicked on it - as I always did with usb pendrive when it happened to appear.
It took several hours to analyze and correct the WD hdd. When finished my hdd was kind of formatted… none of my video was in there.

Does it happened because of the long powered-off storage?
I’m trying to recovery with DISK DRILL (however only 500mb are free to receover…), what software do you receommend to you?
Or do you receommend to let this job done by pro people?
What else can I do to fully receover all my video??

Thanks in advance for the help.

Recuva has a free version … used it a few times didn’t have any data recovery limits

I hope you are attempting to recover the data to another 500GB hard drive ? … because you can’t successfully recover data to the same drive. (ie. if you are successful in recovering the data, then sure … you can copy the data back to the My Passport Wireless. But i would highly advise keeping the data on the other hard drive as a backup)

Hard drives can fail at any time … whether they are used all the time or hardly at all. I’ve had a hard drive stored away safely that failed. Always best practice to keep a backup of all your data on another hard drive.

Attempt it once by yourself … if no luck, then a Data Recovery service can help (lighten your wallet) Data Recovery costs hundreds of dollars … so be prepared for a large figure.

Hi Joey, appreciate your interest, thanks for the reply.
I paid almost 50 bucks for the PRO version of DISK DRILL. I ran the recovery on another WD hdd and this morning I checked the destination folder I created: it weights 448gb. So I thought it succesfully recovered everything! but… when I checked MOST of the files are corrupted…

JPG: Disk Drill put 1.000 files per each folder. in each folder I can see the icon preview of my photos, however their are as it is, just icon size jpgs (160x120 px, weighting very few kb)… BUT I noticed that more or less half of the files in each folders (about 500 files) are blank files w/o extension with a different file name from the jpgs (mm, mm1, mm2, etc), and they weight few MB each! So I tried to rename and add .jpg and it actually worked! I renamed a few of them and they coincide with the same order of the tiny jpg icons.
Good and bad new though: I have to rename manually about 11.000 files and all my timelapse are useless because the files are all in random order…

MP4: most of them are corrupted too… I noticed that only some video loaded their preview icon in the folder. I thought only these were genuine file but some of them play correctly for the first 4-6 seconds then they block. Tried to impor them on Premiere but same result… However I also noticed that some of the file w/o previes icon play correctly, so I’ll have to try playing all of them, just to be sure. Most of the video correctly recovered weight few MB, but some of them are over a GB.

I’ll try to deep scan and recover again with Disk Drill and then with Recuva as well.
if the result will be exactly the same I’ll ask to a service, hoping that they will recover more.

Ok so I made a 5th recovery attempt, this time using RECUVA as you suggested and… WOW!!! it succesfully recovered more than 700 genuine videos for a total of 345gb!!! almost 75% of the hdd!!!
I don’t understand how it is possible: they told me to use the hdd the less possible to avoid corrupting the data even worse. I also talked to ONTRACK company and they told me to give up on recovering videos.
I was loosing faith so I strated running scan&recovery one over others, but I was lucky to get back like 1-2% of the files.
But RECUVA did it gorgeously!!! Is it luck? or is it difference in software? i don’t know but from now on I’ll tell people to use Recuva!