Researchers are predicting that 3% of all digital content will be stored online by 2016 . The primary selling point of cloud storage seems to be the peace of mind it gives users. It’s comforting to know that your photos, videos or other important digital files are nearly instantly backed up online and synced to your computer and safe in case of the unlikely event of a computer meltdown. As such, cloud storage has gained popularity vs. the more “mundane” option of external hard drives or network attached storage solutions. In recent years, most cloud storage providers started providing users with the convenience of on-the-go access to their cloud sync folder from multiple mobile devices.
Storing your stuff in the cloud is definitely a good way to go, but like all technology, cloud storage has its limitations. Here are three issues worth thinking about when you look to use online storage as a way to back up your files.
1. Security & Privacy: Not all cloud storage options are created equal
With the recent booms in BYOD and telecommuting in small to midsize businesses, secure online storage and file sharing solutions are in high demand. With so many people using the internet to communicate and collaborate with coworkers on a daily basis, often needing to share sensitive information and documents, the need to make those interactions secure and protected is paramount.
Before you choose a cloud storage solution – especially one of the free ones being offered out there – take a close look at the terms of service (TOS) agreement. A few of the leading online storage solutions have led to scrutiny by privacy right advocates wondering who effectively owns users’ data.
All online storage is vulnerable to security breaches from increasingly more sophisticated hackers. Even market leader Dropbox experienced a securitybreach generating a discussion about the safety of cloud storage for the most sensitive data.
If you must choose cloud storage solution for your sensitive documents, as a general rule we recommend you steer clear of the free ones. Don’t risk the security of your data in order to save money, doing so may actually end up costing you a lot more down the line.
2. Cost of cloud storage: The more you store, the more you pay
As we’ve pointed out in a previous blog post, cloud storage can be costly. The more information you store in the cloud the more expensive it can get. So saving all of your information online – especially if you are a digital media buff wanting to back-up lots of photos, graphic files, and videos – cloud storage may not be the best solution for you.
3. Access: If it’s not in your sync folder, you’re out of luck
Perhaps the biggest yet least talked-about limitation of most popular online storage and file sharing solutions like Dropbox or SugarSync is the fact that only the information you remember to sync ahead of time will be readily available for remote access once you’re away from your computer.
So what if you haven’t saved all of the data, video, and files that you need in these online storage solutions and you end up being away from your computer? How can you remotely access your files then?
Unlike the Cloud and Dropbox and other online storage options, TappIn gives you secure, remote access (instead of storage) to their data no matter where it is saved. With TappIn, you don’t need to plan ahead what photo or music file you may want to access once you leave the house. You can access it all anytime, from any mobile device.
However, if you (or your employers) still choose to store stuff in the cloud or in other online storage solutions, TappIn is a great complementary solution. It is compatible with most popular cloud storage options like Dropbox and SugarSync. So you can access what’s in multiple clouds, even if you forget to sync.