When using laptops and other gadgets, such as tablets and smartphones, the need to transfer or store your data is inevitable. And the need for data storage increases when laptops are available for affordable prices, since discounts like Dell coupons and various promotions are offered by manufacturers and retailers.
To meet the need for data storage, cloud storage is trending in the consumer market and the number of cloud storage service providers is increasing. There are many options available for us to upload our files, documents, photos and music to use them later. People love to use these services as they can keep their files secure and access them at any time.
Advantages of Uploading Files to the Cloud
There are many advantages of uploading files to the cloud. This not only creates a backup of our files but also makes the file accessible from anywhere at any time. All we need is an Internet connection and a computing device, and we can easily access all our files. In addition, some cloud storage service providers also allow us to stream the music directly to our devices, so we can enjoy them without downloading to the device.
Why You Need to Encrypt Your Files Before Uploading Them to the Cloud
Despite the advantages of using cloud storage solutions, one must know that uploading files to the cloud can be risky. The cloud is also hackable, just like your PC. Uploading files to the cloud doesn’t guarantee privacy or security of the files. In the past we have seen many such cases and even the big shot companies got hacked.
Recently, the iCloud (the Apple cloud storage service for Apple users) account of a technology reporter was hacked. This hack raised many concerns about the security of cloud storage services. Dropbox, another famous cloud storage company, has faced a security lapse multiple times. This year a Dropbox security breach was stated. Before this on June 2011, all Dropbox accounts were left wide open. Anyone could use any password to login to any Dropbox account, which was a great security lapse.
3 Ways to Store Your Files on the Cloud in the Encrypted Form
From these incidents we can learn the lesson that we cannot completely rely on cloud storage solutions. Besides uploading the files as it is, we should take the necessary steps to minimize the damage when the cloud is hacked. For this, we should encrypt the files before uploading them to the cloud. So our data will remain unreadable even if someone has gained access to our account. Below are some tools that you can use to encrypt data on your cloud.
BoxCryptor is the first option on our list because it is considered the best tool to keep your files encrypted on the cloud. It is available on multiple platforms. The beauty of BoxCryptor is that you don’t have to worry about the encryption and the decryption of the files. All you need to do is give a password with which the files will be encrypted and place the files that you want to store on Google Drive, SkyDrive or Dropbox. BoxCryptor creates encrypted versions of the files and the cloud services stores only the encrypted versions of the file.
TrueCrypt is another useful tool that can be used to keep the files in the encrypted form on Dropbox. TrueCrypt is capable of creating an encrypted file container. This file container acts like a huge file and it can be placed in the Dropbox folder. This file container can be mounted as a drive oin your computer so you can easily add and remove files in it. All the files added and removed to the drive are also added and removed from the container and likewise also synced with the Dropbox account. The file container is encrypted with a password and no one can look into the container without the password. This helps you securely place your files on Dropbox.
Encrypted Archive File
This is the most basic and perhaps most manual method of saving your files in the encrypted form on the cloud. All you need is an archive file making application that supports encrypting the archive with a password. The procedure is very simple. Take a file that you want to upload to the cloud. Place that file in an archive, encrypt the archive with a password and upload the encrypted archive to the cloud. When you need the file back, simply download the file; extract the file with the archive application using the password you used to encrypt the archive. This method is quite tedious and is, therefore, not recommended.
Using cloud storage solutions can make our lives easier as there are a lot of advantages to using cloud storage. However, like all other computer products, cloud also suffers from privacy and security breaches. So, before uploading files to the cloud make sure that you encrypt them. This will help you keep your files secure even if your cloud account is compromised.