Are you in search of good and reliable cloud storage or computing service? I believe we can save you time if you just go through this article.
Cloud computing has plenty of advantages that attract more and more internet users to opt for it. Easy access to information, cost-effective, unlimited storage: it all checks out for cloud computing. Even security concerns are alleviated if you choose a good provider. So here is a list of the top five cloud service providers that you can choose from if you want to start using cloud computing.
Top 5 Cloud Storage Providers
Dropbox is one of the most inexpensive (and free up to a reasonable extent) cloud storage provider. It provides 2GB of free could storage to every account holder and allows you to sync the Dropbox folders through a plethora of devices like the iPad, Android phones, Linux, Mac, and Windows gadgets. For up to 50GB of monthly cloud storage, Dropbox requires a $9.99 per month payment. For 100GB of monthly cloud storage, you have to dish out $19.99.
It might not sound so steep because Dropbox allows you to work on the files even without internet. Also, you can set a bandwidth limit or transfer files in parts to prevent a crash. It allows simultaneous access to more than one file.
Most small business owners opt for Google cloud service because of its vast offering of plans for websites, domains and so on. Google has been offering cloud storage through numerous apps that allow a lot of flexibility and customization.
You can have your customized email address, mobile email, calendar, IM tools, Google docs, Google site along with 24/7 customer support, almost 100% uptime and effective spam filtering. If all of this does not make it lucrative enough, it’s extremely economical hosting fee will. You can avail all these services at just $5 a month.
Although iCloud is limited to data and information that are only on Apple devices, it is still very useful. It has a seamless service which means you can start watching a movie on your iPad while on the commute and immediately switch it on the Mac when you get home, with ease. Free storage of up to 5GB is what seals the deal for most users. It is more than sufficient to store media files and light documents. You can buy 10Gb at a rate of $20 per year.
Everything you would need as a professional tool is provided by Microsoft Office and you don’t need to install anything on their servers. Contacts, calendar, documents, emails can all be accessed through the internet. You can access 25GB space as a mailbox, documents and access spreadsheets simultaneously. The entire service costs as little as $6 per month.
Amazon Web Services
For small businesses, Amazon is an excellent choice because the owners need not buy any personal hardware to avail it. You have to pay a small fee on a pay-when-you-need monthly basis to access Amazon’s infrastructure. You can put several layers of security on your data through the Amazon Web Services.
These are the best five cloud storage providers, but Box, Windows Sky Dive are not very far behind. It is important that you choose a provider that you think is trustworthy.
Is cloud computing safe?
Cloud computing is the catchword at the moment, with everyone syncing up their gadgets or software through third-party servers. In fact, you may not even need to actively sync anything and you are still using cloud computing by sending or storing data through emails, social networking websites and all. With recent breaches in security in one of the popular public domains, concern over cloud computing is at an all-time high. Are they justified, or just paranoia?
It delivers user experience, not vulnerable data
The most important aspect of virtual security is making sure the data doesn’t stray when it goes from one server to another. It is in these inter-server transitions that the data is most vulnerable. But with cloud computing, desktop virtualization ensures you never need to transfer data from server to server. It centralizes all data and application that can be easily accessed from hosted computers or via apps or rich client experience. All the static data is encrypted and the keys to decryption never leave the data center. With desktop virtualization, the data can be accessed from multiple points, so there is no need to download and hoard your computer with removable media anymore. Wherever you are, whichever gadget you are using, cloud computing brings all your data to you without losses or leaks.
Endpoint security: A new look
Unfortunately, traditional endpoint security is not possible anymore. Cyber attackers are too fast and too adaptable. This has affected antivirus software and their utilities. It is nearly impossible to update a centralized attack file with millions of endpoints that each antivirus software forms. But most Antivirus software companies have realized and they have now started using cloud computing. After each login, the VM makes sure it has returned to its original state so that attackers cannot find any leverage in the system or software. There is still a lot of improvement required in the field of cloud computing antivirus. Large scale integration of in-hypervisor threats and client-side and server-side virtualization is required. Hopefully, the transition from the traditional blacklisting to the new ‘whitelisting’ endpoint security will gain momentum.
DoS attackers blocked
Data security is most fallible under the circumstances of a denial-of server attack. For this, you need to exercise a lot of perimeter control. The largest cloud service providers have enough defense resources that will protect your data better than anything you can use to make your data center safer by your limited resources.
All these arguments show that Cloud computing is actually safer than other conventional methods of static storage of data. Just think about it: when your information is in a cloud, it is never restricted to one server. But it is also worth mentioning that the safety of cloud computing heavily depends on the security measures of the third-party servers. If they have tight security, you have nothing to worry about. However, if there is some negligence in encrypting or safeguarding on their part then this trustworthy mode of computing becomes a portal of information leak.
Benefits of Cloud
- Backup and recovery: Cloud Computing means all your data is stored in the virtual cloud, so there is absolutely no need to keep copies or backup in any physical device like USB Flash drives. Also, most cloud computing services are experts in handling the recovery of information, so you never have to worry about lost information again.
- Unlimited Storage: You may raise a hue and cry over how little internal storage your device allows, but with cloud computing, you have gigabytes and gigabytes of space to utilize. You have thousands of third-party servers at your disposal to give you more virtual space to store your data or media.
- Easy access to information: It doesn’t matter if you are sitting in a cyber café in London, while your personal computer is in New York. With cloud computing, your data will reach you, through the third-party servers or the cloud, no matter where you are.
- Cost efficient: Upgrading and maintaining cloud computing is quite inexpensive. In fact, compared to traditional desktop software, it costs a fraction. Moreover, if you wish the computer to be available for multiple users, the licensing will require further investment. With cloud computing, you need not to worry about anything like that. There are numerous one-time-payment and pay-as-you-go options that you can choose from.
Drawbacks of Cloud Computing
- Technical issues: With cloud computing, you have numerous servers connected to give you access to all the data. This involvement of numerous devices is a weak link in the chain because if any one fails, the whole system will fail. You need all the information at your data center in order to decrypt the encrypted data.
- Security concerns: We are always wary of sharing personal or vital business information over the internet. Everyone is worried about their data going astray, and rightfully so. There has never been dearth of information leak since the inception of internet. Cloud computing makes your data, albeit encrypted, available in geographically obscure locations. This is bound to leave more than a few users nervous.
- Prone to attack: Attacks are possible at all checkpoints of internet. Hackers are always at the ready. As cloud computing makes endpoint security very weak, hackers can easily target it. This is also one of the main reasons why a lot of users don’t necessarily jump at the opportunity of availing cloud computing.
On the scale of benefits and drawbacks, Cloud Computing decisively has more pros than cons. Moreover, security concerns and technical issues are minimal or negligible if you are using one of the largest Cloud computing services.