We love Dropbox, there is no doubt about it – one of the first cloud storage services has a lot to offer even today when there is so much of competition on the market. However times are changing, and in the light of current issues with cloud storage providers, maybe it is the time to revise the way we use Dropbox.
The main concern for us is, of course, Dropbox data security – whenever we upload data online, a thought crosses your mind “Is it really safe out there?” Well, not really. Dropbox encryption protects your connection while your data is being moved from your local disk to the cloud using Secure Sockets Layer (SSL)/ Transport Layer Security (TLS). When your data is stored on the server, it is protected by 256-bit AES that cannot be cracked without an encryption key.
It all sounds really good, however there is a catch here – it’s not unauthorized parties, but Dropbox itself can decrypt your files if it is required by a law enforcement agency, for example. It can also share files with others. Moreover, there is such thing as data retention – your usernames, emails, addresses, etc. are retained and stored by Dropbox. You can delete your account but never your data, and Dropbox knows “what you did last summer” or rather where you were last summer. It is easy – IP addresses and EXIF data in media files give you away.
What can you do to increase your Dropbox data protection?
Use two-step verification
This feature will require you to enter a special code sent to your registered mobile number or e-mail after you enter your login details. As long as an unauthorized party does not have access to your mobile or e-mail, they will never pass the second step of the verification.
Delist linked devices
We might log into account from multiple PCs and devices, and it’s unlikely we remember to logout. It is much better for your data safety to delist all linked devices.
View current web-sessions
If you see some suspicious activities or browsers you never used, make sure to end current sessions there.
Dropbox will not see your real IP address – VPNs create an encrypted tunnel for rerouting browsing to a server on the VPN network.
It is possible to encrypt data before uploading it on Dropbox with the help of cloud encryption software. There are plenty of good cloud encryption solutions – look around. this will ensure Dropbox cannot read the contents of your data.
Now how do you upload all the secured data online? Use a good Dropbox client – CloudMounter by Eltima. This software enables you to mount Dropbox as network drive so you can easily access and manage it through Mac’s own Finder. Unlike native Dropbox Mac client CloudMounter does not push you to duplicate data locally and online thus saving you space on your hard drive.
Version 3.4.546 (8th Sep, 2018) Release notes