Several years ago we might have thought that 80 GB hard drive on our PC offered space that we could never fully occupy. A couple of years after buying a PC, we started copying our files toCDs, flashes and large capacity external drives. These were the most practical ways to protect and backup our data. But the external devices are not enough anymore and it’s time for a better solution – cloud storage.
Though cloud storage is something that exists for a long time, it started getting widely adopted only recently. Some time ago users still questioned the concept of cloud, but now there’s just not more time to do so. Data growth is almost unstoppable and new storage solutions are highly necessary. Dropbox’s recent announcement about reaching 50 million users is an evidence of cloud storage popularity.
The benefits of storing data in the cloud are various. Cloud services include regular backup, file versioning and excellent sharing options. But one of the crucial questions related to the cloud is data security. This issue still seems to be a major obstacle to adopting the cloud. While some people believe that the cloud is the best way to store and protect important data, others are not so sure about this. Cloud vendors do claim that cloud data are safe but the users are still afraid of the following:
- Data access – even though cloud vendors claim that no one has the access to users’ data in the cloud, their terms of services are not transparent about this. If a vendor offers a server-side encryption there is always a possibility that the data is accessed by one of the cloud employees.
- System failures – it is not a rare thing to have bugs in the system and they can happen even in a data center with high level of security. The amount of data stored in such centers is extremely big and very sensitive, so the vendors have to solve emergency situations as quickly as possible. Otherwise too many users could be damaged.
- Third-party exposure -the possibility of exposing data to third parties is another thing users are afraid of. According to the US laws, the government has the right to request any data to be handed to it. So if a government requires all the data from a data center (which is a very hypothetical situation) a cloud vendor wouldn’t be able to do anything against it.
Secure data storage is particularly important for corporate data. Though cloud vendors work on their security systems all the time, users still question them. Outages and system failures may be a common thing in cloud, but a complete data loss is almost impossible. Even if a particular server goes down due to an outage, there’s always another backed-up copy of the data somewhere. Basically, the chances that yourcloud data get damaged are no bigger than that your yahoo account is hacked. For this reason, companies that cannot afford their own data centers should definitively check out cloud storage reviews and take into account all the possible benefits of public cloud.
- Is Cloud Storage Reliable? (encryptedfilestorage.com)