There are a lot of cloud storage services that let you store your data for free. They let you backup your phone, your pictures, and your work files for free. And they let you access these files whenever you want from whatever device you want.
Although free cloud storage sounds like a good idea, it isn’t. In this article, I will talk about and maybe even convince you why you shouldn’t rely on free cloud storage services such as Google Drive or whatever free service came with your phone.
A lot of free cloud storage services block your account if it reaches or exceeds its storage allowance. They then ask you to upgrade your account if you want to access your files. And they can do this at any point.
You can get locked out of your account at any time if you go over the limit. Now, this isn’t to say that all cloud storage services do this. There are some companies that don’t care about customer experience who do this. This is why I don’t recommend hosting your important or even your unimportant files on a free cloud storage service.
Free cloud storage services provide little to no support. Most free cloud storage services have literally millions of users using their applications and as such their support systems are always filled with requests from free users. The solution most cloud storage services go for is ignoring almost all the service requests from free users.
If you ever get locked out of your account or if your account gets hacked, you will have a very hard time getting it back on a free cloud storage serve. When I got locked out of my account on a popular cloud storage service, I couldn’t get it back because they would never respond to my emails and service requests.
If you choose to pay for cloud storage instead, you will get premium customer support that will always answer your questions within 24 hours. Most of the time they will answer your queries within a couple of hours or even minutes.
If you don’t want to get locked out of your account, you need to get a paid cloud storage service such as pCloud.
If you own a lot of devices, you won’t be able to access your files on all your devices. Because free cloud storage services always limit the number of devices you can sync files between. On a free service, you will have to choose which devices of yours are the most important and should be synced automatically.
Although most services simply don’t allow you to log into additional devices when you are above the device sync limit, some go as far as blocking your account or even signing you out of all your accounts. They will either as you to upgrade your account or you might have to sign in to all your accounts one more time.
Premium services such as Sync.com and pCloud let you sync your files between all the devices that you own. Your work will always be synced between your devices. You can start working on your mobile and then resume your work on your laptop when you reach home. Your files will always be synced wherever you are or whatever device you are using.
There’s always the risk of losing your data if your account gets hacked when you are using a free cloud storage service. Securing servers and testing applications takes a lot of resources and time, so if you are on the free tier of a cloud service, the security of your account will be the last thing your cloud storage provider thinks about.
If you are serious about the security of your account and your files, we recommend storing your files with a security-first cloud storage service such as Sync.com. It offers end-to-end encryption for all your data, so your files and folders are only accessible to you. Even if a hacker gets ahold of any of your files, they will never be able to decrypt it.
Sync.com uses Enterprise-level security infrastructure and measures to protect your data. It also comes with advanced security features such as Two-Factor Authentication, Custom App Passwords, Expiry Dates, and Security Notifications. It even comes with a Remote Wipe feature that lets you wipe your device clean of any files if it’s ever compromised. If your phone or laptop ever gets stolen, you could wipe all the files on it with just a click.
If you are a small business, free cloud storage might seem like a good idea. But you need to remember that it’s not made for businesses. Free cloud storage services are made for personal users and don’t offer a lot of features you will need to collaborate with your colleagues.
Most cloud storage services don’t let you access all the team collaboration features they have when you are behind a free account. They could limit the number of people you can collaborate with at one time or what features you can use.
If you want cloud storage for your business, we recommend a service such as Sync.com that offers collaboration features you can use to collaborate with your team. Sync.com not just lets you collaborate on files, it even lets you create team folders that are synced with all the devices anyone on your team uses.
You also get to choose what files and folders your team members can see. This way you can group team members and limit their access to files and folders that they need. It’s a great way to increase security.
The best part about cloud collaboration that most free cloud storage services don’t offer is being able to edit files and annotate images and documents. If you go with a paid cloud storage service such as Sync.com, it will let your entire team easily collaborate on files without needing to download them every time someone wants to make an edit.
If you rely on a free cloud storage service, you need to keep in mind that they are under no obligation to keep the service online at all times. If your cloud storage provider ever faces problems, it will be free users that take the hit.
Whenever there’s a problem in their data centers, they prioritize their premium users because they are the ones who help them pay the bills. For this reason, you can lose access to your important files right when you need them.
And even if the cloud storage provider goes down for hours, there’s nothing you can do. And remember, how free users get no customer support? Good luck trying to reach your cloud storage service provider when their service is down!
Storing data in the cloud takes a lot of money especially when it’s millions of terabytes. Not to mention, the billions of terabytes in bandwidth it requires. Most free cloud storage service providers don’t have big profit margins that could sustain them in the long-run. It takes a lot of time and money to develop, update, and maintain the software that keeps these services running. They need to constantly keep up with new security vulnerabilities and fix them.
If your free cloud storage provider isn’t backed by a big company such as Microsoft or Google, it can go away at any time. What guarantees the free cloud storage service you rely on will stay online tomorrow?
Although it’s rare, it has happened in the past. Your files could go away without a warning and because the cloud storage service has no obligation to you for a free account, you can’t do anything about it.
Most smartphones come with a free cloud storage service. That includes Samsung phones and even Chinese brands such as Huawei. These free cloud storage services come with all the problems we discussed in this article.
If you don’t like interruptions in your service and want to be able to sync across all your devices, we recommend going with a premium cloud storage service such as Sync.com or pCloud. Both of them offer advanced security features such as End-to-end encryption and don’t limit how many devices you can connect to your account.
You can also check out our list of the best cloud storage service providers where you can read our reviews and the pros and cons of different cloud storage providers.
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