I've been playing with AWS EC2 and really like it. There is one drawback though, the instance could disappear due to hardware failure or whatever reason. This happened to me in my first week of operation. I was wondering whether there are good solutions to backup a MySQL database so that I don't lose my customer credentials?
You can transfer mysql database directly from EC2 machine to S3bucket but you will consume more cost for bandwidth and storage. You go for a third party application (which is safe) to backup your mysql or any plugins. Because they compress your data & encrypt and then save in S3 storage. Also, you can enable snap shot and take snap shots for volumes (hard drives)
I suggest you to use 'StoreGrid' backup software to backup your mysql database in EC2 machine. check this following link to know more about Online Backup Service on Amazon EC2/S3 http://storegrid.vembu.com/online-backup/amazon-ec2-s3-cloud-online-backup.php
Check this following link to configure MySQL database BACKUP http://storegrid.vembu.com/online-backup/mysql-backup.php?ct=1
Note: You have mentioned Hardware failure occurs often ! --- you can backup entire hard drives too using the above software.
I hope, now your MySQL data base is backed up from EC2 instance and stored in S3 storage safely.