The recent celebrity photo-hacking incidents have brought up serious concerns about cloud storage security, and it has sparked more than its fair share of debate, but there’s still one big question left burning: Just how safe is it to use cloud services to store your photos and other digital assets?
Though our specialty is scanning photos, all of us here at ScanMyPhotos use digital cameras just like you, and we regularly upload and store digital photos in the cloud. We also take great pride in the level of security and privacy we offer our clients, so we’d like to help ease the concerns about digital storage by shedding some light on cloud security.
To put things into context, it helps to think of the cloud the same way you would think of your house. A house sitting alone on a hill with the doors wide open is an easy target for thieves. If you want to make sure no one breaks into your home, you’ll need to add layers of security, like installing locks, setting up a burglar alarm or maybe even adopting a large dog.
The same concept applies to cloud storage services—only this time we’re moving the contents of your home to the online arena. This online space, like your house, is only as safe as you make it, so here are our tips on how to keep digital photos safe in the cloud:
What’s the reputation of the site or service you’re using?
Reputation can mean the difference between having a German Shepherd protecting your home or a Chihuahua. That goes double for the cloud service you’re using. Is the site accredited? Do they have positive reviews? Are they offering a two-step authentication process every time you log in?
All of these things considered, even the most trust-worthy websites are still vulnerable to hacker attacks. So what can you do to protect yourself and your data?
Start by beefing up the first line of defense: your password.
How good is your password?
Words like “password” or “1234” no longer make the cut. In fact, harder passwords—like a pet’s name plus your anniversary date—hardly make the safe-password team either. If you want to ensure your information is safe, you’ll need to do the following:
- Use a mix of capital and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols.
- Create a password that is something completely nonsensical like “#1fTTc129%.”
- Make it as long as you can. The longer you make your password, the better.
- Consider using full sentences as your password. By including the spaces between words, you’re significantly decreasing hackers’ odds of accessing your account.
- Change your password every three months. This will help to nullify any previous attempts hackers have been making to get into your accounts.
So are cloud storage systems safe to use? Yes, but they’re only as safe as the security measures you use to protect them. With a bullet-proof password on a reputable storage service site, your digital photos and other information are much less likely to become the target of an attack.
If you have any additional questions about cloud storage security issues, feel free to contact us!