In what ways can I damage my files?

Hi folks.

Please tell me in what ways can I damage my files?

I’m using My Book Essential 500 GB and Windows XP.

A long time ago, I just found out that 3 or 4 of my photos stored in My Book, were corrupt. By that time, the USB cable was not “stable”. I mean if I touched it, the driver would look like “disconected” because it sounded the “USB disconected”. In short, it was like “plugged out and in” the USB cable too much. So that counts as one of the ways to damage the files.

I really hate that, so I want to know if there’s some other ways (besides with turning on and off continuously,…) that makes my files damaged?