Storing Your Data Safely

How safe can I keep my personal data?

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We all are living in a digital age where our data – be it personal photographs, videos and important documents – are today stored on our personal computer or mobile, in a pen drive or on the internet.

Here are a few questions that therefore become important:
(1) How safe is place where I have stored my data?
(2) What happens if my personal computer, mobile, hard disk or pen drive crashes or is stolen?
(3) Is it safe to store the data on the internet?
(4) How easy is it for me to access the data?

Technically, storing data on an external hard disk or a pen drive is the safest with the least chance of it getting hacked or stolen as such mediums can be kept offline. But accessing and updating the data may be a challenge as they need to be plugged-in to a computer each time. It is also possible for such devices to get corrupted in which case the data may not be retrievable at all. Most importantly, the safety of data is dependent on how safely we can keep the devices to prevent physical damage or theft.

The second safe option is perhaps storing on a personal computer or a mobile device. The data is safe to an extent and can be accessed more easily as compared to a pen drive or an external hard disk. However, in this case too, the possibility of the computer or device getting stolen or hacked into exists.

The third option of storing personal data and important documents on an internet cloud may have attractive storage, access and sharing features, but the internet by its very nature is always most vulnerable to online thefts of not just data but one’s identity too. The credibility of any website or app that provides such features depends on the honesty of its intentions and deployment of its privacy and security features. The last thing one would want is misuse by the website or app providers themselves or oversight in their security implementations.

What can be concluded therefore is that security of data and ease of access are inversely proportional. The more secure the data storage is, the more difficult its access is likely to be. If one needs to store data and keep it locked with infrequent access, perhaps an offline medium like an external hard disk is a good option. But if access to view or share is important, choosing the right website or app to do so becomes extremely crucial. Where sensitive data is concerned, choosing the option critically is the wise thing to do. In this case, one ought to be wary of the ‘free’ ones as there is nothing called a free lunch.


Vaibhav Mangal

Business Manager in Global IT Company - Sales professional with in the government segment in India. A movie buff and foodie at heart.