Factors to Consider When Selecting a File Share Service

When considering which file sharing service to use, consider the following factors:

1. Can the users of the file sharing system recall records by referring to file hashes? If the hashes are generated using a private key and public key outside parties will not be able to access the files.

2. Does the service provide tunnelling protocols to allow data to be transferred securely between two points that use different protocols?

3. Does the service allow for customer managed encryption keys? Can the end user use their own encryption software and manage their own keys - the piece of information that allows a cryptographic algorithm to convert encrypted text into plaintext [unencrypted text], and vice versa.

4. Is device-to-device synchronization available? When data is updated on one device, will it be automatically updated on another device it is linked to?

5. What is the maximum size for any one file uploaded to the file sharing platform? For example, different kinds of Box accounts may limit individual files from anywhere between 250 MB and 32 GB. See this post.

6. If the file share software is open source, it will be easier for security experts to check for its vulnerabilities.

7. Does the service offer hybrid clouds - allow for both public and private cloud services. The former is cheaper and can be easily scaled to meet customer demand, but the latter uses a dedicated cloud infrastructure that keeps data behind a firewall.

8. Will files be encrypted only while they are transferred, but also when they are stored on a server? Is the data protected while it is at rest?

9. Does the service offer end-to-end encryption? This will allow only users exchanging files to view them, and prevent access by the provider.

10. Is two factor authentication offered?

11. Does the service permit data mining? Google Drive uses data mining to find personal information it can use for advertising purposes.

12. Does the system have a versioning file system which allows it to store several versions of the same file?

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