More than just storing files: Practical Uses of Cloud-based File Management Services Convenient workaround for Reduces email overload - removes receiving files – removes the the need to email yourself a file need to have someone burn over and over again just to have files to a CD which were to2 the latest version large to send via email.
What is a Cloud-based File Management Service?Web service which allows users Synchronize files acrossto set up an account to store multiple devices (PC,files securely online Mac, or various mobile • Send any file, of any file size, to devices) anyone. • Share folders to easily sync3 information across teams.
Service Provider Options Dropbox SugarSync Create a free account at: Sign up for an account at: dropbox.com/register sugarsync.com/products/sync_pricing.html4
In short, having a Dropbox or SugarSync account can be a HUGE convenience. However, there are some drawbacks.Remember: the public link to a file is easily forwarded - You maywant to delete it from your account once you verify that yourrecipient has downloaded the file. - That could be just as bad as hitting reply all to an email you meant If the file gets into The file could be to privately send!5 easily distributed… the wrong hands…
Stating the Obvious: Legal Considerations Do not upload files which: Compliance with Law Enforcement: • Violate the law in any way • These services cooperate with • Violate the privacy of others government, law enforcement • Defame others officials, private parties to enforce and comply with the law. • Your account could be subpoenaed!6
Mine or yours? Who really owns files stored on Cloud Services? • Full ownership to user. Service provider does not own your files and will delete them off of their servers when you delete them from your account. • Most employees cannot even access your files: only a select few can review your account for legal compliance to a subpoena. • Service provider does not have to notify the account holder if their account was searched.7
The “What If” Considerations 1. What if they go bankrupt? Although unlikely, a service provider could go bankrupt overnight and users would lose data. * This scenario is unlikely. These service providers are highly popular. 2. What if they change their Terms of Service? It’s also possible that your service provider change their Terms of Service to make your files it inaccessible. * Also unlikely - it’s like saying you can’t trust Google to provide free gmail accounts. **Reputation is everything to these companies, so a move like this would ruin them.8
Never put anything on your account that would be devastating if it was compromised Banking passwords Risqué photos Confidential Reports9
Additional Reading • Cloud Computing Pros and Cons for End Users (InformIT.com) http://www.informit.com/articles/article.aspx?p=1324280 • Is cloud computing inherently evil? (InfoWorld.com) http://www.infoworld.com/d/cloud-computing/cloud-computing-inherently-evil- 409 • Ten Reasons Why Cloud Computing is a Bad Idea (TechTangerine.com) http://www.techtangerine.com/2009/06/02/ten-reasons-why-cloud-computing-is- a-bad-idea/10