The Tech Report published more information about the SATA degradation problem with Intel's H67 and P67 chipsets. The issue affects the four SATA 3Gbps SATA ports on the chip, the two SATA 6Gbps ports aren't at risk:
The issue is a circuit design problem resulting in a gradual degradation over time of SATA connectivity on the affected ports, manifesting itself as high bit-error rates on those ports and eventually as total device disconnects.
That's a serious issue, but it's limited in scope. Intel says storage devices connected to those ports should not be damaged, and data on the devices should be intact and readable on another system.
Because this is a chip design-level problem, it will require the replacement of the Cougar Point chips embedded in the motherboards of affected systems. Intel expects to be producing an updated, fixed version of Cougar Point silicon in late February, with "full volume recovery" coming later, in April or possibly even late March.