Local Drive Vs The Cloud – For Data Storage, Security and Accessibility

Local Drive Vs The Cloud – For Data Storage, Security and Accessibility

Businesses are keeping more files, bigger files and collecting more data than ever before; a trend that is likely to increase in the future. This has made storage one of the key features of modern IT infrastructure. However, while having adequate storage space solves one problem, there are other needs to be addressed. Files and data need to be secure, organised, easily accessible and shared. Today, there is a range of storage options available, including local drives and cloud storage platforms. Here, we’ll look at the pros and cons of both of these solutions.

The pros and cons of external hard drives for data storage

Cost

External hard drives are relatively inexpensive and easy to get hold of, available from many online and high street outlets. Advances in technology have also made them able to hold more data. Portable drives can store several Tbs and larger external drives significantly more. Overall, portable drives benefit from being a one-off expenditure, helping those with limited IT budgets avoid ongoing charges for third-party storage services.

Processing power

Evolving technology means portable storage now has SSD drives which read and write data far quicker than older HDD drives. That said, they need to be plugged into another device, such as a laptop, using a USB cable. While USB speeds have increased, USB 3, for example, can reach up to 10Gbps data transfer, this is significantly slower than the capacity of the SSD inside and thus limits the performance of the external storage device overall.

Security

Small and easily lost, stolen or damaged, data loss is one of the biggest disadvantages of using external drives. Lost files can cause major disruption to your business and if a misplaced or stolen drive contains personal information about customers or suppliers, it can result in a data breach that lands your company with a large fine.

Another concern is that It is not unheard of for former employees to take external hard drives containing critical business intelligence with them to new jobs where they can use that information to the detriment of your company and the benefit of their new one.

From a design perspective, another flaw with many external drives is that, unlike computers and storage servers, they have no internal fan. Without an in-built cooling mechanism, there is no control over the temperature other than a small vent. In hot rooms, when working busily for long periods, they have the potential to overheat and this can result in hardware failure and the loss or corruption of data.

The final risk is with the disposal of old drives. If data isn’t completely erased, it can be restored. Selling a drive second hand or throwing it away could potentially lead to your deleted files getting into the wrong hands.

The pros and cons of cloud storage

Cloud is now the go-to IT infrastructure and used by businesses and individuals for all manner of purposes, including running critical applications, data analytics, automation, IoT, app development and storing data. Here are the pros and cons of cloud data storage. – Read more

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