With companies like Google gigabit, Microsoft, Apple, and Dropbox or terabyte online storage, sticking things in the cloud is an interesting idea – especially if you’re using a lot of devices or need to access PC stuff on your mobile on a tablet.

While you can not use your primary storage cloud service on your main PC or Mac – they simply copy what you store to your local hard drive or your mobile SSD

you can use their folders as your default storage of documents, photos, and other file types – and then you can access some or all of these files from other computers, mobile phones and tablets by opening individual files or syncing certain folders.

But is it wise to put your important data in the cloud? Here are ten things to think about.

different services have different requirements, so while Dropbox, Google Drive and OneDrive work with just enough, iCloud requires a Mac to run at least Yosemite and / or iOS devices running iOS at least 8 – and when there is an iCloud client for Windows, no one for Android or other mobile platforms. It’s important to think of devices you may want to share and check there are apps available for that device.

Do not place your faith for free

It is good to get something for free, but free comes without warranty – the terms and conditions, features and options can and sometimes change with little or no notice, the capacity is likely to be quite limited and no items are guaranteed no price tags attached.

That does not necessarily mean you need to hurry and spend money, though, many of the services paid are offered in packages with other purchases. For example, Office 365 customers get a cloud storage stack (whole terabyte) as part of their group.

Protect your phone

If you will share or sync with your mobile device, protect them with a PIN or password; it’s bad to keep your computer safe and then leave your phone or tablet open for anyone to access your stuff.

The UK Mobile Phone Crime Unit says that more than 300,000 phones are lost every year, but that’s what it says to guarantee – the real number is much higher. If someone gets your phone, can they access your stuff? Make sure they can not take time at all.

Know what’s safe to save

The only sure, positive, sure way to ensure something that can not be obtained from the internet is to make sure it never goes anywhere near the internet.

While risk of losing or stealing data from well-known cloud services may be far, it can still be done and something you need to think – especially if you store work files with people’s personal data, because the Data Protection Act says data must be adequately protected.

Do not want the world’s master plan to fall into the hands of the enemy? Use encryption of files at whatever you put in the cloud.

turn on 2FA

A simple username / password combination is not enough to keep your cloud storage secure, so the primary cloud storage provider offers two-factor authentication, or 2FA for the short term. 2FA uses the second form of verification to make sure you’re actually you, most familiar with sending codes to other devices like your smartphone or tablet. 2FA is also available for online service.

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