Back, Back, Back It Up: Local or Cloud Storage? Part 2

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I think it’s safe to say we’ve scared you into backing your data up for life, but what’s the best tactic for doing so? Should you take to old school roots by backing up your data locally or should you go “Cloud”? And does it really matter?

The answer is yes it does matter, but like any decision this one is inevitably yours to make.

Local storage known as external hard drives are great because you have control of all your data and can access it without a connection to the Internet. However, local drives are not particularly flexible. Let’s say your photos from your latest vacation are too big to email to your best friend in Charleston. She still doesn’t believe you actually went parasailing and you’re determined to prove her wrong so you bring your hard drive with you the next time you visit. While it’s annoying to lug it around in your carry on bag, what’s even worse is you breaking it or god forbid losing it. The last thing you want is to get all the way to Charleston to find that you still have proving to do.

This is when online storage would be a great option. Online storage allows you the flexibility of accessing your files from anywhere so long as you have an internet connection. Your friend could have seen the pictures without you having to schlep around some device. However, do remember that your data is now being stored in the internet realm meaning that you no longer have 100% control over it. While it’s less likely, the storage vendor in the cloud can make mistakes that could result in possible hard drive failure or file loss. If there is a security breach in the cloud system, your data is at risk of being stolen by hackers. And there is the off chance that the provider stops providing service for one reason or another.

While your data is still at risk with the cloud backup option, you don’t have to worry about your data physically disappearing forever… no fire, no spilled drink, no slippery fingers can harm it. If you’re someone who is constantly on the go and has a serious case of the travel bug, storage in the cloud is probably the way to go when backing up your files. This way even if you forget your laptop at home or it fails on the day of an important meeting, you will always have a copy of your files available at your fingertips.

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