With the number of high-profile data breaches and leaks reaching almost biblical proportions this year, people are starting to wonder whether their cloud data really is safe with big corporations.

Google, Apple, and (to a lesser extent) Dropbox all have a lot to answer for when it comes to encryption in the cloud. The fact is, your cloud data is only as safe as the servers holding it.

When the data of millions of people are stored on a single cloud server, the risks should be obvious. If you’re considering personal cloud encryption, here’s what you need to know.

Why Cloud Encryption?

As mentioned, one of the primary appeals of doing your own cloud encryption is safety. Giant servers hosting millions of cloud user’s information are attractive targets for hackers and attackers, meaning major cloud providers are a risk.

Just as important is privacy. Google and Apple might claim that when they encrypt cloud data, it’s safe from prying eyes. However, their terms of service state that they reserve the right to scan and open your files for marketing purposes. This means that anything you have on their cloud service is free game.

What Do I Need?

There are different types of encryption you’ll need to consider. The encryption options available differ in terms of layers and complexity. For example, one of the strongest types of cloud encryption is 256-bit encryption, which would take an average computer several years to crack. This strength should be your main consideration.

There are a number of types of encryption software you can use for free. Some of these can be used to encrypt files on existing cloud servers such as Dropbox, preventing them from being opened by the company itself.

Many of them are free, such as Cryptomator and Boxcryptor, but you might want to pay for one of the most airtight encryptors.

For anyone wondering how to encrypt data themselves, don’t forget you’ll need keys. The encryption keys are your own passwords for decrypting files you want to access. It’s crucial that you don’t lose them, as your files will be lost if you do. Keep your keys on a separate storage unit. Make sure that is equally secure.

What Are My Other Options?

Cloud encryption does not necessarily mean encrypting your cloud profile. You can also choose to encrypt individual files and folders before uploading to the cloud. Some have even argued that this method is safer.

To do this, you can use top-rated, free services such as 7Zip, which will place a 256-bit encryption on individual files. Note that this process is more time-consuming and is probably best for those who only have a few important files that need to be secured.

Just remember to do your research and read plenty of reviews before using any encryption software.

Learn More

To learn more about how cloud encryption and cloud solutions can grow your business, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today.

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