Photos help capture the best moments in our lives.However, storing them securely is crucial if you want to keep them private.This enhances them, as well as your privacy.Even if you share all your photos online, it's wise to have a safe backup of them.
While there are cloud services that can help you upload your photos and protect them, you can choose from various other methods.Here are some handy ways to protect your photos.
1. Use an external hard drive or solid state drive
The most economical way to securely store photos is to organize them locally on an external storage drive.
Considering it's an offline storage mode, you don't have to worry about malicious attackers over the internet.Plus, you can take the storage drive anywhere and don't need internet access to check your photos or show them to others.
You can choose to encrypt the entire drive for added security.Note that encrypting the drive may affect performance, and you will most likely have to enter a password every time you access it.
2. Use a network-attached storage device
Network Attached Storage (NAS) is an internal storage solution with an option for cloud services.It's tailored for businesses or professionals who have a lot of photos and videos to store.
However, if you want a robust backup solution for all your files and photos, you can also use it for personal use.Unlike traditional hard drives, NAS devices include a cluster configuration in which redundant copies of your data are kept for added security.Unless the device has experienced serious physical damage, you can rely on it for a long time.
Synology NAS is one of the most popular options on the market.E.g,Synology DS220jVery suitable for beginners to use.
And you can make cloud backups of your local storage using NAS device links and supported cloud services.Cloud services provide encryption and other basic security features to help you maintain privacy.
3. Encrypt photos on your computer
You can choose to encrypt your files using software, or choose not to encrypt your files if there is no risk of unauthorized access to your files.
Tools like Cryptomator can help you encrypt files.Note that you can also access these types of tools on mobile devices, but they may not be available for free.And some third-party options may not work as you expect.
You can encrypt folders or individual files.It is ideal to create a folder with your collection and encrypt it.To continue, you need to create a master password to decrypt locked files.Make sure you create a complex password, and if you must, keep it in a safe place in case you forget it.
Without the password, you cannot recover your photos.Therefore, when encrypting photos, you need to be careful with passwords.
Encrypting photos can add another layer of security.Even if your files are compromised, people can't access them without your master password.
4. Use a secure cloud storage service
Encrypting your photos, creating a password, and having a copy sounds like a lot of work.Also, you need to make sure your encrypted files are regularly backed up (to a cloud service or NAS).Still, it's worth it for peace of mind.
If you don't want the hassle, you can automate the encryption process by uploading your photos to a good cloud storage service.Some secure cloud storage services offer end-to-end encryption and privacy-respecting features.By using such a service, you can encrypt your files and have a cloud backup at the same time.With end-to-end encryption, service providers (and their employees) cannot access files.
You can use cloud storage services on multiple devices (including smartphones), which should be useful.However, it's always a good idea to investigate the privacy policies of these services to check if you can trust them and see how they protect your data.
5. Create your server
If you hate local storage and don't trust cloud storage services, use your own server to control your data.
You can create a server (on premises or in the cloud) and deploy software like Piwigo or Nextcloud to upload and manage your photos.With this option, you can control your data, keep it private, and organize it to your liking.
However, it takes time and technical expertise to create a server, either on-premises or cloud-based.You can choose this option if you are ready.Depending on your technical expertise, you will have many ways to protect your data.
Note that this is not a recommended plan for everyone; only for the tech-savvy.
6. Encrypt your mobile device
While it's easy to use a secure cloud service, you can also use your smartphone to keep your photos safe.
Almost all modern Android devices have encryption enabled by default (for internal storage).If you're using a microSD storage expansion, you can head to the device settings and encrypt it.Note that your performance will suffer when encryption is enabled.
For iOS devices, you need to set a password to enable data encryption.Either way, there are plenty of ways to hide photos on your phone.
Encrypting your phone is a good option as long as you don't share photos with anyone and keep your device safe from unauthorized access.
Protect your photos to save them and enhance privacy
Whether you want to create a safe archive of your photos or protect them from malicious attacks, it's easy to protect pictures or your entire gallery.
Choose a safe place for your photos in a method you feel comfortable with.
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