The moment you decide to pay for cloud storage, you also make the decision to entrust the integrity and security of your files into your provider’s hands. Because of the huge responsibility that you’re placing in their hands, it’s best to have a checklist that would help you make sure that you work with nothing but the best.Here are a few qualifications you should look for in a cloud storage provider:
1. Established Customer Base
Who does your storage provider work with? The bigger the names of the businesses are, the better your cloud storage provider’s reputation is as well. Remember that big, established companies back up even more sensitive data, which means that they would also use nothing less than excellent when it comes to cloud storage.
2. Geographically Distributed Data Centers
Aside from the fact that back up and syncing become faster when a data center is near your location, having a well laid out map of data centers would make all processes more efficient no matter what happens. If one data center encounters technical issues for example, plan B would be easier to execute if there are other data centers within reach.
3. Tight Encryption
Any online connection is susceptible to external attack. Because of this, your cloud storage provider should be ready to push attackers away with the kind of encryption they use. We’re not just talking about your usual average encryption here – it has to be advanced, something stronger than your regular hacker would be able to handle.
4. Financial Stability
The moment you sign a deal with a provider that is not financially stable, then you also run the risk of losing all your data the moment the company capsizes. Remember that financial stability is one sign that a company can be trusted to deliver on their commitment without running the risk of them closing down or pulling out even before your contract is over.
What about you? What other qualifications would you add to this list?
These days, a lot of communication is done through sending and receiving emails. Some information you send out may contain sensitive data. Wrongdoers want access to your data and they can easily do so by taking a peak at your email once you send it out. Remember, unencrypted emails are easy for people with the right training to read, and if they get their hands on your information, your accounts may be hijacked. This is why encrypting your email is important regardless of whether you deal with sensitive information or not. There are different ways on how to encrypt your email depending on where or how you check it.
Encryption for Different Ways of Accessing Emails
• Check for SSL/TSL encryption on your web browser. Before sending out any emails through the web-based email program of your preference, take a look at the address bar and confirm that they are using the https address instead of the usual http. Don’t forget to check this especially if you are using an unsecure connection like public Wi-Fi hotspots. If you don’t see the secured https address, simply type the additional s after the http and see if that leads you to the encrypted address.
• Change the settings of desktop client programs to enable encryption. Desktop client programs like Microsoft Outlook have the option to encrypt your emails if you go to the settings menu, search for the Advanced tab, and check the option to require encrypted connection. Similarly, if you are using an email app on your smartphone or tablet, head over to the Advanced or Security settings and see if there is an option to encrypt your data.
• Encrypt existing emails on your mail app. Even existing emails can also be encrypted on your mail app by encrypting the entire drive where your emails are stored or by adding a layer of protection through third party apps that offer encryption services. Windows PC owners using the Outlook software can choose to manually encrypt their emails by right-clicking on the .pst file on their computer and going to Properties, then to Advanced, and choosing Encrypt contents to secure data.
• Encrypt new emails. Start learning how to encrypt your email with open source and commercial applications created specifically for encryption and decryption. Different encryption software work differently. Some of them require installation and a public key that you need to give out to the people you send emails to, while others use the convenience of SMS messages to provide the password used to decrypt the email.
For your own peace of mind, and for the security of all your information, whether they may be relevant or not, you should consider encryption. This added protection will make everything you send unreadable to the prying eyes of strangers who want to access your accounts. It is best to remember that different channels used to access emails may use different encryptions, so make sure that you are covered on all bases. Your desktop application should be encrypted as well as your mobile app. Leave no weak spots.
Are you already using email encryption? What are the encryption types that you use and what do you prefer? Share your thoughts and suggestions with others!
We all know that knowledge is power, and that our confidentiality agreements, non-disclosure forms and more importantly – even our own financial records – are just few types of information that should stay and remain private. The thought of using security tools won’t alarm the government or take advantage of that fear and complacency in any way, as it’s the common identity thief who strikes unknowingly for something that can be used or sold, or even someone just curious enough to try and view your information on public Wi-Fi.
Today, it is necessarily important to discriminate between the Internet and internal email systems. Internet email can already be stored on computers and networks; most of the time without either or both the sender’s and recipient’s control. What’s more interesting is, the great possibility for 3rd parties to read and / or modify the content – all of which can be done in a matter of minutes.
Your email privacy, without solid security precautions, can be quickly compromised due to the following reasons:
• Generally, email messages are not encrypted.
• Email messages need to go through other computers in-between before getting to their destination, so it is pretty easy for strangers to seize and read through your messages.
• Most ISPs (Internet Service Providers) can store copies of your email messages before they are delivered using their mail servers. Despite getting deleted from your own mailbox every now and then, backups of these messages can stay up to several months on their server.
So in this regard, any form of email security is most welcomed.
When deciding on the best way to protect sensitive information, always bear in mind as to how extremely valuable all that information is to you as well as to what extent is reasonable in order to keep it safe. One of the first things you need do is to outline the level of confidentiality and/or privacy you would need and thus, carefully decide on the level of email security implementation for it.
Be completely serious about passwords
You and everyone else must have heard this simple warning a thousand times already, and yet most of us do not seem to follow it. The great part of all those stories about someone’s account getting compromised or broken into is commonly caused by simply created and remembered passwords; and what’s even sadder is that these spear-phishing thieves cannot be easily traced.
In the most likely event, you rarely actively use the Internet to work, a simple two-step verification process involving a code sent to your mobile phone via SMS may appear tiresome – although for those people who use their email for sending business information as a form of email security implementation do appreciate this option.
Encryption is still, so far, the best way to safeguard your data and generally works as follows: You have a certain file/s you may want moved to a cloud. Then you use a specific kind of software (with which you created a strong password for) just for that file. So, after moving that password-protected file to the cloud – no one would be able to grasp the content of the file without ultimately knowing the password.
Lastly, though not everyone is always prepared to pay for important data to be stored, sometimes paying for safe and secure data storage sounds reasonable enough and does work.
Are you constantly living in fear of losing valuable data to unforeseen circumstances? Do not have a disaster recovery plan as of yet? Then, it is time you thought of one. And what could be better than the system of online backup? Putting it simply, online backup refers to the systematic backing up of data on a system external to your computer. Hence, this system is also called remote backup system as it uses the services of a remote backup server.
How Does Online Backup Work?
Proper storing, managing and backing up of data acquires paramount importance in the functioning of an organization smoothly. Small scale enterprises are capable of generating terabytes of data, including emails, videos, spreadsheets, presentations, images, files, documents and the like. And to manage this data systematically, online backup is the best alternative that you can come across. But how does the system exactly work?
The first step in the process is the selection of the available storage capacity as per your requirements. This flexibility of the system proves to be way cost efficient. The entire system is designed in a simplistic manner to enable people with minimum technical knowledge to navigate through things easily. The drag and drop option allows users to easily add documents for safe keeping. And there is also the fact that you do not need to install anything. Accessing files and documents later on is also quite an easy affair; all you have to do is enter your username, password and internet connection.
How Will You Ensure That Your Data Has Been Backed Up Successfully?
All being said and done, it is important to ensure that your data has been backed up successfully to ensure its safe and timely retrieval. And how will you do that? The first thing you need to understand in this direction is that encryption forms a very important part of the whole scenario. Online backup service providers will usually ask you to select your encryption code or will set it to the standard default code. Choosing your own encryption code means that your data will be absolutely secure and nobody apart from you will be able to access it. However, there is also the fact that if you misplace the key to encryption, then your data will be lost.
Is Free Online Backup Reliable?
The popularity of the idea of online backup service has led many service providers to offer free services to its customers. The question that arises here is how reliable these free online backup services are? The whole point of the online backup service is to keep your data safe. Free or not- every online backup service provider does that to the best possible extent. You can retrieve your backed up data anywhere, anytime by means of the internet. Even if free services are just limited to a trial period and a certain capacity, there is always the fact that the services provided by the organization will be just as good, if possible, better.