While some of us are better off than others, personal users aren’t big companies capable of dishing out hundreds or thousands of dollars for computer services annually. We’re going to make sure the services are affordable for the average Joe. The more storage the service provides for the money, the better the deal. It’s great if they offer a free plan or trial, too.
European cloud storage company Tresorit gained recognition with its hacking contest a few years back, offering $50,000 to anyone who could hack into its servers. Tresorit claims no one succeeded. Clearly, the company is going after the security-conscious, promising end-to-end encrypted file sharing and syncing, HIPAA and GDPR compliance, the protection of Swiss privacy laws, and other security measures.
To add a further level of security you can enable two-step verification, so even if someone steals your laptop or ID, they’ll need your phone to access the data. The servers are also based in the EU and governed by Swiss privacy laws which should keep it out of the hands of any invasive national agencies that feel it is their right to purloin your personal information.
What could possibly go wrong? Human error accounts for a good deal of cloud storage tragedies, but the dropped internet connection is another common troublemaker. Ask around (or just look through our review comments), and you'll hear sad stories of how cloud storage can go wrong. One of the benefits of paying for an account is that it usually comes with additional support from the provider, so if anything does go wrong, you can get someone on the phone to help you resolve the issue.
Mega is the sequel to the now-defunct Megaupload, a cloud storage service that was taken down by the authorities a couple of years ago. Mega is an up-and-coming service that gives users 50GB for free. That's the largest sign-on bonus we've seen among all of these cloud storage apps and services. It comes with a range of storage options that span from 200GB to 8TB. The app is quite flashy but there are a few bugs here and there that some people have experienced. Its biggest feature is that it encrypts all files uploaded to it for added security and protection.
Keep your password secure. Change your password regularly and don't use the same password across multiple websites. If hackers crack one password it's a pain, but if they access all your online accounts it can be a nightmare. As many sites use your email as a login ID, using the same password increases your security risk (see 60 seconds on password security for more info).
There are many other reasons to pay for cloud storage, from getting a lot more space (a terabyte really doesn't cost all that much anymore) to being able to upload really big files. That last benefit is relevant to graphic designers, video editors, and other visual artists who often host enormous files. Other perks of paying for your cloud storage often include increased access to file-version history (meaning you can restore an important business proposal to the version you had before your colleague made a bunch of erroneous changes), more security, or more features for collaboration and working with teams.
Not all of the files and folders are encrypted automatically, but instead you drag the contents you want to remain private into a dedicated Crypto folder. This means you can have a mixture of encrypted and non-encrypted files on your drive at the same time, handy for sharing non-confidential documents with friends while also having and added level of security for others.
Dropbox’s Business is the top app in our file sharing websites category. It is not difficult to guess why clients trust and adore this system, most of it having nothing to do with its really moderate pricing. Dropbox Business holds a Supreme Software Award and is likely to maintain its top ranking due to the best-in-class and easy-to-use functionalities that have been helping millions of users worldwide achieve better collaboration, productivity, and overall workflow.
IDrive offers storage plans for individuals and businesses, which range from free to $74.62 per year. Not only can this service back up your computer, it also boasts extensive file-sharing and syncing capabilities. Specific features include the ability to share files and folders via email, Facebook and Twitter, mobile access, remote management tools and online file syncing. It can also back up multiple devices and back up files in real time. The service is highly secure as it transfers and stores files with 256-bit AES encryption using a user-defined key that is not stored anywhere on the servers.
Block Storage - Other enterprise applications like databases or ERP systems often require dedicated, low latency storage for each host. This is analagous to direct-attached storage (DAS) or a Storage Area Network (SAN). Block-based cloud storage solutions like Amazon Elastic Block Store (EBS) are provisioned with each virtual server and offer the ultra low latency required for high performance workloads.
A reputable cloud storage service protects the files behind encryption and requires you to enter a password in order to be able to access the files. Most of the time, the cloud storage account can be protected behind two-factor authentication, too, so that anyone wanting access to your files has to know not only the password but another code sent to your phone upon the login request.
Katherine Murray is a technology writer and the author of more than 60 books on a variety of topics, ranging from small business technology to green computing to blogging to Microsoft Office 2010. Her most recent books include Microsoft Office 2010 Plain & Simple (Microsoft Press, 2010), Microsoft Word 2010 Plain & Simple (Microsoft Press, 2010), and Microsoft Word 2010 Inside Out (Microsoft Press, 2010).
There's also Space Monkey , which has an entirely different take on cloud storage. For $200, you buy a 2-terabyte (TB) hard drive from the company. You get to use 1TB of the drive's space to store any and all of your files as a local backup. Your files also get encrypted and broken into bits that are sent to other Space Monkey users' hard drives, so that you can access your files from another computer or mobile device. That's where that extra 1TB of space on your drive comes in -- it's used to store bits of other people's files. The service is free for the first year, then costs $49 per year to keep storing your files in the cloud.
^ Kolodner, Elliot K.; Tal, Sivan; Kyriazis, Dimosthenis; Naor, Dalit; Allalouf, Miriam; Bonelli, Lucia; Brand, Per; Eckert, Albert; Elmroth, Erik; Gogouvitis, Spyridon V.; Harnik, Danny; Hernandez, Francisco; Jaeger, Michael C.; Bayuh Lakew, Ewnetu; Manuel Lopez, Jose; Lorenz, Mirko; Messina, Alberto; Shulman-Peleg, Alexandra; Talyansky, Roman; Voulodimos, Athanasios; Wolfsthal, Yaron (2011). "A Cloud Environment for Data-intensive Storage Services". 2011 IEEE Third International Conference on Cloud Computing Technology and Science. doi:10.1109/CloudCom.2011.55.
By sharing storage and networks with many other users/customers it is possible for other customers to access your data. Sometimes because of erroneous actions, faulty equipment, a bug and sometimes because of criminal intent. This risk applies to all types of storage and not only cloud storage. The risk of having data read during transmission can be mitigated through encryption technology. Encryption in transit protects data as it is being transmitted to and from the cloud service. Encryption at rest protects data that is stored at the service provider. Encrypting data in an on-premises cloud service on-ramp system can provide both kinds of encryption protection.
iCloud requires iOS 5 or later on iPhone 3GS or later, iPod touch (3rd generation or later), iPad Pro, iPad or later, iPad Air or later, or iPad mini or later; a Mac computer with OS X Lion 10.7.5 or later; or a PC with Windows 7 or Windows 8 (Outlook 2007 or later or an up-to-date browser is required for accessing email, contacts, and calendars). Some features require iOS 11 and macOS High Sierra. Some features require a Wi-Fi connection. Some features are not available in all countries or regions. Access to some services is limited to 10 devices.
No, Dropbox doesn't have many bells or whistles. No, it doesn't offer the most storage for free or the least amount of money. All it does is let me create, add, delete, move, copy, edit, whatever file and directories just as if they were any other file on my system. It doesn't matter if I'm using Linux, Mac, or Windows, or most smartphones or tablets; it just works with my device's native interfaces. That means I don't have to think about how to use it, I just use it. That makes it a winner in my book.
Quick take: While it’s a bit sparse on helpful photo features, OneDrive might appeal to Windows users. Whether or not you use Microsoft Office, you can access and share photos using the OneDrive app, which does not require an additional download for computer use. If the 5GB of free storage is too slim, you can pay about $2 per month for 50GB or $70 per year for 1TB.
Cloud storage is a critical component of cloud computing, holding the information used by applications. Big data analytics, data warehouses, Internet of Things, databases, and backup and archive applications all rely on some form of data storage architecture. Cloud storage is typically more reliable, scalable, and secure than traditional on-premises storage systems.
Object storage services like Amazon S3, Oracle Cloud Storage and Microsoft Azure Storage, object storage software like Openstack Swift, object storage systems like EMC Atmos, EMC ECS and Hitachi Content Platform, and distributed storage research projects like OceanStore and VISION Cloud are all examples of storage that can be hosted and deployed with cloud storage characteristics.