What You Can Do to Maintain Your Privacy on the Cloud

February 06, 2018
PRIVACY AND FREEDOM

In today's digital age, phrases like "safe deposit box" are being phased out, replaced with new storage systems like "the cloud." While email security has long been a focus for those looking to maintain their digital privacy, increasing reliance on the cloud is also prompting discussions about how users can protect themselves and their sensitive information.

What is the Cloud?

The broad nature of the cloud has often made it the target of misunderstanding, and even jokes about its ambiguous-sounding name. In reality, the cloud is a type of online storage offered by a wide range of providers to help internet users store professional or personal data.

In professional realms, most large corporations rely on it to store or process significant amounts of customer and client data, and employees may tap into a cloud system to facilitate working both in the office and on the go in today's ever-mobile workforce. On the personal side, cloud storage can be utilized for storing and sharing everything from photos to banking documents and other sensitive information. 

How to Stay Safe in the Cloud

Just as now-outdated flash drives were prone to security issues, so too is the cloud.

There are a number of steps users can take to protect their privacy. When it comes to security, email can be an entry point to the cloud for hackers. Most cloud providers will verify login and password information through an automated email, so ensuring email security by using an encrypted, private email service is an important line of defense.

You can also opt for added encryption for your cloud data. Services like B1 Free Archiver allow cloud users to password-protect files that they upload to the cloud to provide an extra layer of security. Some cloud providers like SpiderOak or Tresorit also have built-in encryption tools.

Finally, one of the best ways to protect yourself on the cloud comes down to common sense: Just like you wouldn't leave a key to your house in your mailbox, or you wouldn't save a list of credit card numbers in your email, don't put highly sensitive information on the cloud. While there are ways to reduce your risk of a privacy issue, avoid it altogether by not storing such data on the cloud.

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