Cloud storage has been the rave these past years. It offers much flexibility for companies that need a reliable data storage solution. Being able to access and update files using any device then collaborate with your team anywhere at the same time are just some of the flexibilities that cloud storage offers.
Despite its many benefits, cloud storage still possesses some risks. Security, for example. You still need to sort out which files can be put in the cloud and which ones can’t.
What NOT to store in the cloud
Any files holding confidential and/or sensitive information that must be protected from unauthorized access must never go to cloud storage. There are three types of sensitive information: personal, business, and classified information.
Information that can be used to trace an individual is within the scope of personal information. This includes Social Security number, passport, biometric, and medical information.
This includes clients’ and suppliers’ information, investment, acquisition plans, trade secrets, and financial data. In essence, any confidential and proprietary business information is considered sensitive business information. The above examples are simply some of the common ones since each business may have its own standards.
Any information pertinent to security measures is categorized as classified information. Regardless of how safe the providers claim their cloud storage are, you’re still exposing yourself and your business to unnecessary risks should you insist on keeping classified information on the cloud.
What to store in the cloud
Keeping photos of your last family picnic as well as videos and selfies in the cloud is generally all right. However, pay close attention to each before uploading them. To be more specific be sure the background is OK.
People tend to forget that their surroundings can reveal much more than had originally intended. If you’re a medical professional taking a selfie in the hospital and your background shows a whiteboard with a list of patient names, you’re effectively breaching patient confidentiality. Such a picture must never be stored in the cloud nor shared in social media.
Even the things you can’t see in the picture may reveal too much. Modern phones and cameras can embed geo-location, time, and equipment information. Are you OK with the possibility of such information being in the wrong hands?
“Anything else I should note?”
Yes. Remember to convert all images to WebP format as it gives better quality images than JPEG yet smaller in size. Also convert your videos to MP4 format since it’s typically have better compression and thus smaller in size too.
“Why do I need to do that?”
To save space and bandwidth, of course. This is especially important when every penny counts. Sure, the cost of storage is cheap. Amazon Drive only charges you $59.99 for 1TB of storage but bandwidth is still expensive. Even if only 20% of the files are frequently accessed, the cost of bandwidth will add up quickly.