Hard Drive Dead? These Cloud Backup Sites Will Help Next Time

SugarSync Hard Drive DeadIs your hard drive dead? Has all your data been lost? Yeah, it's probably not the best time to think about backup. Then again, better late than never, right? You should always, always, always (did I say “always?”) back up your data. It doesn't even have to be hard, either. It can also be free. Really! Here are the top ten free ways to back up your data.

1. Google Drive: with 15 GB of free storage, Google Drive is a popular option. Drive is simple to use, is there when you need it (really, I can't remember when Drive was down), and it's also a great way to share and edit data with other people, if this is what you want to do. There's that whole NSA and Google scare thing to consider, so encrypt your data if you want to go the extra mile.

2. SugarSync: SugarSync is another popular way to backup your data. This site now offers 5 GB free, and that ain't bad (it's not as good as what Drive offers, but it's still 5 free GB). The interesting thing about SugarSync is that you can increase the amount of storage you have by recommending the service to friends, or by taking some online quizzes.

3. Dropbox: Okay, we've talked about Dropbox before, and now there's some concern that Dropbox isn't safe (again, you can encrypt your data first), but it's still a popular data storage tool – and an excellent collaboration tool too.

4. Skydrive: I don't really dig the Skydrive folder that Microsoft has set up. Otherwise, Skydrive offers 7 GB of free space (dropped from 25 GB).

5. Wuala: never heard of this one? It's not a bad way to go either, and Wuala provides you with 5GB of free storage. More importantly, though, Wuala also comes with file transfer encryption (pre-transfer), and that's something that's really important these days.

You can't have enough data backup options, and free data backup options are the best kind. If you have data, you need to back it up. Don't wait until your hard drive fails completely. Back it all up now, or you will – mark my words – be sorry one day.

Hard Drive Dead: Some Additional Considerations

Free sites (most of them) do not offer encryption security. What does that tell you? You have to encrypt your files before you send them. Now, if you have a whole lot of sensitive data, I highly suggest going with a cloud data storage company like Symform or Cloudsafe. These cloud hosting sites offer a lot to companies looking to store heavy data securely. Take a look at that linked article for more details.

It also pays to find a free storage site that will still exist a year from now. You don't want to store your data in the cloud with some new site, and have that site fold up shop while you sleep – goodbye, data!

Questions? Comments? Leave me a note below, and I'll get back to you soon!

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