Cloud storage is easy to use and is convenient. But that makes it susceptible to cyber-attacks. You're also relying on another company to keep their servers up and secure. Here are some easy ways you can protect cloud storage.
Secure Your Logins
The most important thing you can do to secure cloud storage is make sure you use strong passwords.
Avoid adjacent keyboard combinations or repetitive characters – passwords like “qwerty”, “123456”, or “AAAA”.
You should also add multifactor authentication to protect your data in the cloud.
The easiest way to set this up is with an app like Authy or Google Authenticator.
If you want to use a physical medium, Yubikey is a great alternative.
Try not to use SMS or email text multi-factor authentication if you can. It just defeats the purpose if hackers can access your messages or emails.
Make a Backup
It's a good idea to physically back up your files, preferably offline. External drives can be plugged into a computer via USB or USB-C.
SSDs (solid-state drives) are much faster and more portable than regular external drives, but more expensive.
When picking a drive, ensure the file format works with your computer – Mac and Windows use different file formats.
Dedicate that drive specifically for backup use, try not to incorporate regular files on it if you can.
If you have a ton of data or you're a business owner, consider a NAS. Network Attached Storage (NAS) is a dedicated server that provides storage for a home or business.
The beauty of a NAS device is that it can be easily accessed by multiple people, multiple computers, mobile devices, or even remotely.
If your computer crashes your data will still be safe on the NAS.
Keep Your Data Private
To secure cloud storage, your data should be as private as possible. Your cloud provider should have a clear policy on encryption.
Choose a cloud provider that has "client-side encryption". That way, the encryption, and decryption only happen on your device.
Even if hackers get access to your cloud provider's servers, they can't encrypt your files.
If possible, pair encrypted cloud services with a VPN.
With a VPN, you can mask your real IP address and hide your cloud traffic and network activity.
If you're using cloud storage, make sure your logins are secure with strong passwords and multi-factor authentication.
Consider an offline backup like an external drive or NAS as a failsafe if your cloud provider goes down.
And keep your data as encrypted as possible with client-side encryption and a strong VPN.
Also, keep in mind that cloud providers guarantee they will stay online most of the time, but not all of the time. Stay up to date on any server maintenance changes or outages.!