Free Secure Cloud Storage

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by tobacco, Sep 18, 2010.

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  1. tobacco

    tobacco Frequent Poster

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    I'm revisiting online storage again as it's been awhile but this time, with enhanced security as a focal point as i would prefer not to have to encrypt everything in Winrar or Truecrypt. So therefore, would want some form of transparent encryption/decryption done client side.

    I just started with a free 2GB account with Dropbox - http://www.dropbox.com and i must say it's very responsive with good upload speeds. But not sure how secure it is as the encryption seems to be done when the file has finished uploading to the server (server side encryption)o_O ?.

    Here are a few more i only briefly looked at (not tried) that appear to offer added security. Any comments on some/all of these would be appreciated.

    SwissDisk: Only 50mbs with the free account. No client side install - http://www.swissdisk.com/how/

    VitalEsafe: free account offers 100mbs. No client install - http://www.vitalesafe.com/

    The above 2 can be accessed via WEBDAV. Has anyone tried the 2 freebies below out to connect this way??

    NetDrive - http://www.netdrive.net/download.html
    Gladinet - http://www.gladinet.com/p/download_starter_direct.htm


    MyOtherDrive: Free account gives 2GBs. Lots of features and can designate folders to encrypt with the encryption done client side - http://www.myotherdrive.com/

    Wuala: 1GB with free account that is basic storage - http://www.wuala.com/en

    However, this service is very interesting as alot of the storage is provided via P2P. Here is an interview detailing the process - http://www.centernetworks.com/interview-wuala-founder-ceo-dominik-grolimund
    To gain the "Pro" features, you need to buy additional storage or "exchange" extra hard drive space on your machine for additional cloud storage - "Free" :) Everything is encrypted client side first.

    Again, any comments are welcome ;)

    Thanks!
     
  2. uxossone

    uxossone Registered Member

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  3. tobacco

    tobacco Frequent Poster

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    Hi Uxossone

    I already have that with my hotmail account but i'm looking for free "Secure" storage
     
  4. tobacco

    tobacco Frequent Poster

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    Ok - had some time today to mess around with a few of the ones i mentioned above and here are a few of my early findings :D

    DropBox - 2GBs Free with the ability to increase that amount through referrals. Upload speeds are fine.

    Security - SSL transmission and files at rest encrypted with AES-256. Encryption appears to be done server side.

    Small program installs on the user's computer and looks just like a regular windows folder. Easy drag&drop but very plain. More features available through the web interface.


    MyOtherDrive - 2GBs free (more through referralso_O). Speed again fine. Actually the 3 i'm mentioning all had close to the same upload speeds.

    Security - "No" SSL during transmission or server side encryption. However, this one does have client side encryption/decryption using AES-128. You can mark folders on the server as "encrypted" and any files uploaded to these folders including subfolders are encrypted before leaving the user's machine.

    Uses a "java client" not installed but once opened, the user can close their browser.. Takes abit to fire up but seems to work fine. Lots of options.


    Wuala - 1GB free with basic storage features. However, can get the pro features free by trading spare storage and bandwidth on your computer in exchange for extra cloud storage. So basically, some of the storage involves P2P :D Speeds are fine.

    Security - All files are encrypted AES-128 client side before uploading.

    Uses a very nice, robust, installed client with many options.
     

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    Last edited: Sep 20, 2010
  5. tobacco

    tobacco Frequent Poster

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    Performed a simple test trying to fully understand the encryption involved with the 3 services mentioned above using a small image upload.

    Even though the image should be encrypted in some form with all of them, the image was easily viewable in DropBox and Wuala. However, with the file placed in an encrypted folder on the MyOtherDrive server, i could "Not" open/view the image file. And in order to download it to my computer, the encryption password must be entered first. Sweet ;) :D
     

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  6. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

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    Hi Tobacco,

    nice thread, cloud storage is the future especially for people on the move. I got interested in one of your suggestions namely Wuala (probably easier to spell than the French Voila'!), their 'trade offer' is certainly quite innovative, even though the thought of having 50 GB of encrypted alien data on my HD makes me feel a bit uncomfortable.

    I like the privacy issue, the password doesn't leave your computer, so your data 'should' be safe from prying eyes. Last night I uploaded about 0.5 GB of presentations, the upload started at 11 pm and ended... at 8:30 am!(I obviously went to bed). I guess the encryption process makes it time consuming. I think I might keep Wuala for very private stuff, and small files.

    I have been using for almost two years ADrive: http://www.adrive.com/
    It is free up to 50GB (not encrypted for the free storage plan), I use it only to make available to other people large files that would be impossible to send by e-mail. It is very fast when uploading, and so far I had no problems using it very often. Normally my shared files are basically research presentations which have practically no privacy issues.
     
  7. tobacco

    tobacco Frequent Poster

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    LOL! - Yes, i understand but since they are in encrypted form also, there shouldn't be any worries. I like the option since i have alot of space i don't need on my D partition i can exchange. Though the user has to keep in mind the added bandwidth if your ISP (mine does) sets limits.

    Strange it took that long. The other night i uploaded a 100MB file and if i remember correctly, it only took 30-45 minutes which speed wise i thought was acceptable.
     
  8. Halffull

    Halffull Registered Member

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    tobacco, you didn't include the king daddy of online backup services, Mozy, it offers 2GB of free backups.

    Also the others you mentioned

    SwissDisk: Only 50mbs with the free account. No client side install - http://www.swissdisk.com/how/

    VitalEsafe: free account offers 100mbs. No client install - http://www.vitalesafe.com/

    Wow.. what a p***take, 50mb and 100mb storage space, I know digital camera pictures that take up 10mb, what are you going to do with swissdisk? back up 5 photos, LOL.

    The other service I think is great is SugarSync, they offer 2GB free data storage. However, their service comes with synchronisation feautre as standard, so what does that mean for us? it means that we can sync files between our laptops and computers in real time. No joke.

    So if you work at home off your own laptop a lot, it can be great because you can switch between your desktop and laptop easily, and all the files are chnaged and updated between your comps.
     
  9. tobacco

    tobacco Frequent Poster

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    While Mozy seems to lack some of the features other free services provide, i was happy to see the user is given the option of key selection though it is unclear to me where the key is "really stored"
    http://community.mozy.com/t5/Mozy-for-Windows/Encryption-Questions/m-p/6740

    Even a small amount of storage (50-100MBs) can be useful for important document storage if it has good security in place ;)

    Nice features however security wise they are no different than dropbox as they hold "all" the cards - i mean keys :blink:
    encryption and key storage server side :thumbd:

    Another in your sig link is ElephantDrive :

    Again, they contol the keys:

    I just love this comment :rolleyes:

     
  10. Halffull

    Halffull Registered Member

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    Tobacco, I'm not really familiar with this issue of security key storage, how would this be a problem for day to day storage?Are there any documented cases of "keys" being mishandled and people losing all their data?

    Surely this issue of where the keys etc are located are purely academic, as it really makes no difference to the end user, I can image companies which hold very sensative information might be concerend (but then again companies would never just rely on online backup, and will have an IT guy to do local backups as well). I think for the home user, the mainstream providers like Mozy, SugarSync, ElehpahtDrive etc are more than adequate levels of service.
     
  11. tobacco

    tobacco Frequent Poster

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    Hi Halffull

    Maybe my original post wasn't clear enough but my intent of this thread was "enhanced security" - meaning that the user controls how his/her data is stored. Not the other way around which is how most of these services operate.

    I certainly don't have "top secret" data to store but i am just sick and tired of the continued disregard of ones privacy and am always looking for ways to make sure my personal info "stays mine"!

    So to me, a secure cloud storage service must allow me to have not only the encryption done on my computer but any passwords and/or keys stored locally.

    If you want an excellent example of this, look at my post on "MyOtherDrive" ;) Even i can't view\open "my files" on the server that are encrypted!
     
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