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The Risk Of Online Storage

HP's new entry into the online storage arena, <a href="https://www.upline.com">Upline</a>, looks like a reasonably good deal. For $59 per year, a single user gets unlimited online storage, with sharing, publishing, and search capabilities. That's about how much EMC's <a href="http://www.mozy.com">Mozy</a> charges for its online backup service.

Thomas Claburn

April 7, 2008

1 Min Read

HP's new entry into the online storage arena, Upline, looks like a reasonably good deal. For $59 per year, a single user gets unlimited online storage, with sharing, publishing, and search capabilities. That's about how much EMC's Mozy charges for its online backup service.But as the price of online storage declines, tempting more and more people to embrace the benefits of having an online remote backup, I have to wonder whether enough attention is being paid at these services to data security. (It seems like an appropriate worry with the commencement of the RSA Conference this week.)

Now it may be that the major data security risk most people face is hard drive failure, in which case having an off-site backup of one's personal files is worth risking the more remote chance of a compromise in the cloud.

But data breaches are a fact of life and many organizations with sophisticated IT security practices have been victimized by even more sophisticated cybercriminals. It's naive to think that consumer-oriented data storage services might be somehow immune.

Bank robber Willie Sutton, asked why he robbed banks, is widely believed to have said, "Because that's where the money is," despite < href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Willie_Sutton">a denial in his autobiography. For cybercriminals, online data storage services probably look at lot like banks, except without the high-end security.

Here's to hoping that HP locks Uptime's doors tight.

About the Author(s)

Thomas Claburn

Editor at Large, Enterprise Mobility

Thomas Claburn has been writing about business and technology since 1996, for publications such as New Architect, PC Computing, InformationWeek, Salon, Wired, and Ziff Davis Smart Business. Before that, he worked in film and television, having earned a not particularly useful master's degree in film production. He wrote the original treatment for 3DO's Killing Time, a short story that appeared in On Spec, and the screenplay for an independent film called The Hanged Man, which he would later direct. He's the author of a science fiction novel, Reflecting Fires, and a sadly neglected blog, Lot 49. His iPhone game, Blocfall, is available through the iTunes App Store. His wife is a talented jazz singer; he does not sing, which is for the best.

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