A Word document can disappear in the event of power failure, a computer error causing Word to abruptly shut down, or closing the document without first saving the changes. Some documents can be recovered if they are lost, but not all of them.
Microsoft Word has an AutoRecover feature that will sometimes save a file, even if the document has been abruptly closed. In order to make the AutoRecover function more efficient, a user can adjust its time intervals in the "Tools" menu, under "Options." By clicking on the "Save" tab, a "Save AutoRecover Info" box will allow the user to lessen or increase the duration between automatic saves.
AutoRecover should always be thought of as a backup safety measure, however, and should not be relied upon instead of saving a document. The best way to prevent the loss of a document is to use a surge protector, keep programs up to date, and to regularly save the document while working on it.