Day 12

Set Up A Privacy Friendly Cloud Backup Solution


DAY 12: Set Up A Privacy Friendly Cloud Backup Solution

Welcome to Day 12 of my 30 day security challenge, the month long challenge I created to help you gain control of your privacy and security online. You can follow along with the security challenge via my blog at, where you can skip ahead or download a checklist of the challenge. Each video will also be curated into a playlist so it'll be easy to follow along from Day 1 all the way through 30 here on Youtube.

Today let's chat about private backup solutions. You've already taken tons of steps to make your home network, your computers, and your mobile devices more secure. You've even done what you can to make your IoT devices secure, but what do you do in the event of a natural disaster?

I live in earthquake country, but I've also witnessed a volcano in Hawaii, a hurricane in Virginia, a tornado in Missouri, and wildfires here in California. Anything can happen. Someone could break into your house and steal your computer. Your apartment complex neighbor could leave the gas on overnight and burn the complex down. You could accidentally leave your laptop in your car and someone could steal it. You could spill water on it. So you want to make sure you have redundancy in the form of backups.

While this isn't necessarily crucial for privacy and security, it is a crucial step for your peace of mind. Me? I have four backups. Local on my computer, a network attached storage device that automates backups every day, a hard drive I back up seasonally and store in a fire proof safe, and an online cloud solution.

Since a cloud solution means you'd be trusting a third party with your data, it's important to only pick a cloud backup that is privacy conscious. There is absolutely no reason for a company to hold any kind of encryption keys or password details for your files.

I use SpiderOak One, but there are others I will also mention today. I chose SpiderOak because of their no knowledge policy and inexpensive pricing model. I got a holiday deal of unlimited backups for $129/year. Seems reasonable to me. My photos and videos are worth much more than that.

The important thing to keep in mind is that zero knowledge means the company that runs those servers for those cloud backups has no knowledge of your data. You should be the only person who has access to your data - that also means you're the only person who has access to your passwords and private keys to your data.

It's also important to find a company that encrypts your files before they are transmitted to the cloud. SpiderOak does this, which is another reason why I pay for the service, but with that encryption comes a slower upload and download speed. I don't really notice the speed difference since I just automate my backups every night after I go to bed.

Luckily, setup is easy whenever you decided to create an account and become a customer of a cloud backup option. You simply signup with a username and password, create a really good master password for your cloud backups, and download the desktop or mobile app to start backing up. I highly suggest going through the application and account settings to make sure you've opted into any privacy settings, turned on automated backups, and have encryption turned on if it's not a default.

Most cloud service providers also offer perks like file sharing and storing past file versions so keep in mind your personal needs as well whenever signing up for one of these.

Like I mentioned, there's lots of other options too: Tresorit and come to mind as a couple. And if you're already using other cloud options like Google Drive, Box, or Dropbox (all of which are NOT zero knowledge options), you can encrypt files before transferring them with services like ODrive.

Remember, there is no reason to upload files to a cloud service without encryption. Options are abundant and different prices, and features are becoming more and more welcoming to consumers. These options I've mentioned are consumer friendly for convenience and also offer privacy and security for your cloud backups.

Now go out and find a cloud backup solution you prefer, sign up and get it downloaded. Set up an automated backup of your files and check those security settings!

Day 12 is now complete! Tomorrow is all about setting up a password manager! But first, make sure to subscribe on youtube and hit up for the downloadable checklist and to skip ahead on the 30 day security challenge. Again, I'm Shannon Morse and I'll see you tomorrow for day 13!

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