Cloud storage has become a popular option for storing photos, videos, documents, and a variety of other types of files. There is no doubt cloud storage offers a variety of benefits including convenience, ease-of-use, and consistency. At the same time, there are a number of potential drawbacks which everyone needs to be aware of before deciding to solely rely on the cloud. It’s important to keep in mind that many of these potential drawbacks can easily be avoided with proper preparation.
Minimal Control Over Where the Files are Stored
The first potential drawback of using this type of service is the lack of control over where the files are actually stored. For many people this isn’t a problem because it won’t noticeably impact their day-to-day activities. At the same time, it is always beneficial to know where all the files are being stored. Natural disasters are always a real threat to data centers and not knowing where files are stored makes it more difficult to foresee a natural disaster related outage and take the proper preparation to ensure the files remain unharmed.
The Service Could Close at Any Time
Another potential drawback of using a cloud storage service is that the service provider could always close up shop without notice. The industry as a whole is still very young, which means some of today’s most popular solutions likely won’t be around in a decade. To be fair, this is always a risk with any online service but considering how young this industry is it is more of a potential drawback than normal. This makes the best cloud storage solutions the ones which are backed by a business with diverse interests.
The Service Could Get Hacked
As with all online content, the threat of being hacked is always a real possibility. From a user standpoint, the only thing to do is follow proper security measures so that they are not the weak link. Most cloud storage services are transparent and will alert users if there has been a breach of security. There are a variety of additional security steps a user can take to minimize this threat, such as encrypted files before they are uploaded. In addition, there are providers that offer significantly better security features than your run of the mill cloud service.
An Internet Connection is Essential
Obviously anyone using cloud storage must have an Internet connection in order to access their account. In general this isn’t considered to be much of a drawback, but there is no telling when accessing files will be necessary. While it seems like Wi-Fi hotspots are everywhere, their constant availability is not a guarantee.
Cloud Technologies Are Still Evolving
The final potential drawback of using cloud storage is that the technologies behind it are still evolving. Being a young industry, the foundation technologies are still growing and improving. While this likely only means that the processes and procedures will improve with time, it also means that cloud storage solutions today look a lot different than they will tomorrow.
With all of the benefits online storage provides most people consider the risk of the potential drawbacks acceptable, however it is always a good idea to keep them in mind when selecting a cloud storage provider.