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  1. Joined : Dec 2015
    Posts : 31
    Windows 10
       23 Feb 2016 #1

    How safe is the Cloud?


    I have a friend who wants to install Office 365. She is intrigued by The Cloud without really understanding what it is and this has attracted her to a version of Office that uses the Cloud. I'm afraid she has a rather exalted view of what the Cloud is: she is asking me whether she even has to take backups of her Word documents and powerpoint presentation if they are in the Cloud. She seems to think that they might be completely safe there and that it would be impossible to lose documents from the Cloud.

    I have to admit to having very little detailed knowledge of the Cloud myself. I had assumed the Cloud is just a pretty name for servers that are as terrestrial as any other computer and therefore just as vulnerable to power failures, disk crashes, and the problems that affect ordinary computer users. I suspect that is entirely possible to lose documents or powerpoint presentations that are in the Cloud just as it is for the hard drive on my laptop to crash.

    Am I correct? Would she still be well-advised to take regular backups of the things she puts on the Cloud? Or is the Cloud massively redundant with techniques like RAID5 so that even a hard disk crash on a Cloud server would not cause a loss of data?

    Also, how secure is the Cloud? Let's say that the Cloud is working perfectly and has no hardware issues of any kind: how hard is it for someone to hack into the Cloud and steal her data? Or is everything coming and going thoroughly encrypted and invulnerable to interception? (Okay, I didn't really mean that last bit. I know that anything can be hacked if someone wants it badly enough. In her case, her files are mostly cooking recipes and family photos, not things affecting national security, so I'm just trying to figure out if it would be reasonably secure or if the average 4 year old could hack it on his Xbox without breaking a sweat.)
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  2.    23 Feb 2016 #2

    Cloud servers are safer, They are there to prevent data lose from hardware due to failures and others you mentioned, they exist to prevent exactly that and to give one an alternative option to access the data from any where and make multiple copies. Top cloud providers can keep your data safe and consistently accessible. If you are worried about security to an extend one can always go with multiple cloud storage providers, like you can store the files in Onedrive and the same can be kept in your Google Drive as well, You got two copies of the same file so redundant access from multiple clients. About file security, Most top clients use an encrypted form to save the files in their system. For additional security you can encrypt the files in your local machine and then upload the encrypted file into the encrypted file storage for maximum level of encryption accessible. Cloud is well a great option to have your files accessible from any where on any device so you can pretty much go with that.
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  3. Joined : Oct 2014
    Posts : 654
    Windows 7
       24 Feb 2016 #3

    Cloud servers are as safe as is reasonably safe to make them. But nothing is ever completely safe. Cloud server operators maintain safeguards but none are foolproof. Operators make no guarantees regarding the safety of your data and their terms of service may change at any time without prior notice. Servers of all kinds are a natural target for hackers who may access, modify, or delete your data. And of course all of this is beyond your control.

    If your data is important you must maintain local backups, multiple backups if the data is of particular importance. Backups can and do fail, and usually this isn't noticed until they are needed.
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  4. Joined : Sep 2014
    Posts : 2,923
    Windows 10 Pro
       24 Feb 2016 #4

    In most cases, your data will be safer from hardware failures if you are using a cloud storage service like One Drive or Drop Box. These systems use redundant storage and some (like One Drive) have file versioning, so you can restore an older version of a file if you happen to make a mistake and overwrite it.

    In general, the level of reliability from a cloud service will be far superior to what most users can and will do for themselves.

    However, Office 365 isn't a "cloud only" solution, you install regular old applications on your PC, but they are licensed via a subscription service, and data is stored locally and backed up to the cloud (unless you choose to store it only in the cloud).

    Of course, nothing is perfect.. and these systems are maintained by humans, so who knows.. but it's their job to make sure you don't lose data, and if they did on a regular basis, you wouldn't pay for it.

    Also, some people worry about privacy in the cloud... I personally find that silly for most people, as your data is just one tiny imperceptible portion of the overall amount of data they manage... It's like worrying that operators are listening to your phone conversations (actually, that possibility is probably far more likely, statistically speaking).
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  5. Joined : Dec 2015
    Posts : 2,428
    Windows10
       24 Feb 2016 #5

    Mystere said: View Post
    Also, some people worry about privacy in the cloud... I personally find that silly for most people, as your data is just one tiny imperceptible portion of the overall amount of data they manage... It's like worrying that operators are listening to your phone conversations (actually, that possibility is probably far more likely, statistically speaking).
    For general privacy yes, but one should not preclude possibility of a corrupt employee or hacker accessing cloud files. I would still advise you do not put bank account details, passwords type stuff on the Cloud, or at least encypyt files with strong passowrd, and use obscure filenames so as not to be obvious.
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  6. Joined : Jan 2014
    Oak Ridge TN, USA
    Posts : 23,932
    Windows 10 Pro x64
       24 Feb 2016 #6

    cereberus said: View Post
    For general privacy yes, but one should not preclude possibility of a corrupt employee or hacker accessing cloud files. I would still advise you do not put bank account details, passwords type stuff on the Cloud, or at least encypyt files with strong passowrd, and use obscure filenames so as not to be obvious.
    There are some really good free encryption tools available that would prevent that from being an issue.
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  7. Joined : Jan 2014
    Walnut Beach, Milford, Ct
    Posts : 7,543
    Win10 Pro / Remix 3.0
       24 Feb 2016 #7

    BunnyJ said: View Post
    There are some really good free encryption tools available that would prevent that from being an issue.
    Oh there is ?
    Name one with a link which is proven to be unhackable.
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  8. Joined : Jan 2014
    Oak Ridge TN, USA
    Posts : 23,932
    Windows 10 Pro x64
       24 Feb 2016 #8

    COMPUTIAC said: View Post
    Oh there is ?
    Name one with a link which is proven to be unhackable.
    Ever hear of a complex password??
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  9. Joined : Jan 2014
    Walnut Beach, Milford, Ct
    Posts : 7,543
    Win10 Pro / Remix 3.0
       24 Feb 2016 #9

    BunnyJ said: View Post
    There are some really good free encryption tools available that would prevent that from being an issue.
    BunnyJ said: View Post
    Ever hear of a complex password??
    I asked about the " encryption tools ".
    All passwords are hackable.
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  10. Joined : Jan 2014
    Oak Ridge TN, USA
    Posts : 23,932
    Windows 10 Pro x64
       24 Feb 2016 #10

    COMPUTIAC said: View Post
    I asked about the " encryption tools ".
    All passwords are hackable.
    Any tool that allows you to password protect a file or folder would be just fine.

    And I'll tell ya.. let me send you and encrypted file and have at it.

    Just incase.. 7Zip ..
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


 
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