What is Cloud Backup?
Cloud backup is a method of protecting your data. It works by automatically creating copies of your files, which are then transferred to a secure storage location over the internet. This secure location is normally looked after by a responsible 3rd party provider and usually, carries a small monthly charge.
Cloud backup helps to protect you against loss of data. For example, if you accidentally delete a photo gallery that you wanted to save, you’ll be able to find a copy in your cloud backup account. Similarly, if your hard drive becomes corrupted, any files you saved there will also be saved in your cloud backup.
What’s the Difference between Cloud Backup and Cloud Storage?
A lot of people think that cloud backup is the same as cloud storage, but this is not quite true. There are similarities, of course – both involve storing your files securely on a remote server. But whereas cloud backup services will automatically create copies of your files, cloud storage will only create copies of the files you tell it to save.
A good example of a cloud storage service is Dropbox. Dropbox gives you a folder on your computer or mobile phone, which you can drop or copy files into. These files are then securely stored on remote servers, and you can access them from other devices. However, unless you specifically tell Dropbox to do this with particular files, then nothing will be backed up – it will only backup the files you manually move into the folder.
With a cloud backup service, you get the benefit of automatic syncing of your entire hard drive (or SD card if you are using a phone backup service). Every time you download a file, upload a picture, or create a document, it will be automatically transferred to your cloud backup service for easy retrieval in the event of an emergency.
In a nutshell, cloud backup automatically saves your files on a secure remote server, whereas cloud storage simply gives you the option to protect specific files.
How to Create a Computer Backup in the Cloud
So, you want to create a backup for the files on your computer. What now? Well, you have several options.
- External Hard Drive. An external hard drive is a very simple solution and involves plugging in a separate device to your computer – such as a USB thumb drive. You can copy files to this external drive, and access them again if your computer breaks or you accidentally delete something. The problem here is that it is slow and tedious – you have to manually transfer files to your external device every time you want to back something up. It’s also worth noting that external hard drives come with their own set of issues. For example, thumb drives are easy to break and even easier to lose.
- Web-Based Storage Application. Again, a service like Dropbox could be a good way to back up your files, but this too comes with its own problems. As well as having to manually choose which files you wish to create backups for, you are also faced with data limits – if you want to save your entire hard drive, then a free cloud storage application like Dropbox probably won’t help you out (unless you pay a large sum for their premium packages).
- Cloud Backup Solution. An automatic cloud backup solution is the best answer to creating an automatic backup of all your files and folders. It will sync whenever you have an internet connection, meaning anything you do is updated in real time, to provide an up-to-date backup of your computer’s hard drive, whenever you need it.
How Secure is a Cloud Backup Service?
Most cloud backup services take security very seriously.
For a start, your data will be securely encrypted. This is a way of scrambling the contents of your files so that nobody else can see what they contain – your pictures will be hidden and your text files will be unreadable, meaning that if anybody hacks into your cloud backup servers, they won’t find anything of value.
Not only will your data be securely encrypted so that nobody else can see it, but most cloud backup servers will also have in-built protections against viruses and malware. And, in the event that your cloud backup provider ever has a server meltdown of their own, they will normally even have backups of your backups!
Why a Cloud Backup is So Important
Most people store files that can have devastating effects if lost. For example, unique photographs that preserve cherished moments, or important work-related documents. Have you ever had a power cut before you managed to save something you were working on? Failure to back up your files is very similar to this, but on a much bigger scale – if your computer hard drive fails, then you lose everything.
Hard drive failure happens more often than you might think. It only takes one small computer virus, or one glass of lemonade spilling onto your keyboard, and your files could be lost forever.
Cloud backup is an affordable solution that will stop this from ever happening to you.