Data privacy has had a tough year. In September, when Yahoo! released a statement about a 2014 hack that reached 500 million user accounts, the data privacy industry thought it could not get any worse. Barely 90 days later, the same mega company announced that they had suffered a hack in 2013, which affected twice the number of clients, approximately one billion active users. Verizon Communications had agreed to buy the core business of Yahoo! in July, but after the first breach they said they would need to renegotiate.
Failure to make security a priority at Yahoo! should be a cautionary tale to consumers who care about their data security and privacy. This nightmare, which has affected millions of Americans and billions of people around the globe, is driving the growth of private cloud technology.
Private cloud technology, also called Network Attached Storage (NAS), has blossomed in recent years. Statistics point to an increase in the trend among small businesses through 2022. Severin Marcombes is the founder and CEO of Lima, a personal cloud company, and these are three factors he thinks are influencing the current concerns over data privacy and security.
A critical factor in the effectiveness of personal cloud technology is its central-storage infrastructure, which allows for both safety and accessibility. “Personal cloud technology allows users to access their information anytime, anywhere with complete privacy,” Marcombes said. “Consumers can rest assured knowing that no one is snooping on their information. Privacy is a fundamental right that we all have; personal clouds are a technology that protects that.”
Encryption and coding technology are continuing to improve as NAS becomes more in demand on a global scale, and the purpose is to increase usability and security simultaneously. NAS functions like a hybrid between a hard drive and cloud storage, providing the benefits of both. The important difference is that cloud storage places your private information in the hands of a third party, whereas NAS allows you to maintain full autonomy.
“It’s the dream combo,” Marcombes said. “It helps prevent the risk of theft while maintaining the luxury of accessibility.”
Improved security means improved privacy. Cloud storage puts all your information on the internet, which is not as safe a place as we like to think. Yahoo! can remind us of that.
Personal clouds store information like a hard disk and allow you to limit the networks the information is shared on, allowing for greater control of sensitive information. “The biggest advantage here is that this technology assures security and privacy, while being just as easy to use as any cloud service that you could subscribe to,” Marcombes said. “Personal cloud technology takes greater steps to put privacy back in the hands of the user, where it belongs.”
3. Ease of use.
Renovation in the personal cloud industry has resulted in increasingly consumer-friendly products that require little configuration or set up. NAS technology has grown to include multiple storage units and backup options, multi-user accessibility and, of course, improved remote access.
The last three years have seen significant improvements in NAS technology. Processing and sharing speeds have increased, and user-friendliness has been noted as a key feature of interest in small businesses.
“Security is a priority and ease of use is increasing adoption considerably,” Marcombes said. “There are two elements that make Lima's private cloud technology secure: encryption and decentralization. Of course encryption is an imperative for preventing hackers from stealing your information, but so is decentralization. When everyone's information is sitting on a central server at Google or Dropbox, hackers are highly incentivized to get it. With personal clouds, hackers have to individually target millions of people, which substantially reduces the incentive.”