Lost Memories: Perils of Cloud Storage

So Much Stuff, So Little Space

How often have you wanted to free up space on your phone/computer/tablet device by saving your photos and videos in the cloud? If you’re like me, you do this frequently—especially if you’re one to take lots of photos (guilty). Cloud storage provides a cheap alternative to having to invest in an electronic device with more storage space or buying additional units of RAM which can become very expensive, very quickly. Now imagine if those precious photos disappeared in an instant and were lost forever.

Sounds terrible, right? Well, that’s exactly what happened recently.

Errors of Cloud Storage

This past weekend, I stumbled upon an article written by Jan Čurn (@jancurn) about an error in Dropbox’s Selective Sync feature which accidentally deleted thousands of photos from various users’ accounts. This would not have been a problem if the users saved a copy of these photos on a hard drive; however, they were using cloud storage to free up space which means that all of these photos vanished forever.

Imagine precious photos of yours gone forever.

Moral of the Story?

The security issues in storing files in the cloud are consistently hashed out online by websites such as Johns Hopkins University and InfoWorld  but this issue with accidental file deletion does not get as much press as it deserves. The moral of the story here is that while you may use the cloud for file storage, always make sure you have your important data backed up on a hard drive.