Subscribe / Unsubscribe Enewsletters | Login | Register

Pencil Banner

Four excellent Dropbox alternatives for your small-business storage needs

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal | Aug. 19, 2013
From extra security to advanced collaboration, these consumer cloud storage providers cater to your professional needs.

Dropbox revolutionized the way we share information, and no enterprises have enjoyed the benefits more than small businesses. Cloud storage has enabled them to access critical data from the road, work across geographic boundaries, easily share large files, and do away with costly physical infrastructure.

But while Dropbox and other popular cloud-storage providers are adequate for the average consumer, most services don't meet small-business needs for security, affordability, real-time collaboration, and lots of file storage. Here are some Dropbox alternatives that do. Like Dropbox, each offers an easy-to-use interface, 2GB of free storage, and drag-and-drop syncing, and any are guaranteed to be a boon to your business.

Free storage: 2GB

Pricing: $100/year for 100GB, $600/year for 1TB (100 users per TB)

Best for: Security

For better or worse, Dropbox has become emblematic of cloud security issues. Not only has the service been hacked, it has also made security mistakes such as accidentally turning off password authentication for millions of users. Although there will always be a certain amount of risk with cloud storage, some services out there make an extra effort to protect your data.

Spider Oak's "zero-knowledge" encrypted service is ideal for storing sensitive business data

SpiderOak is a cloud-based storage and syncing service that offers full encryption of your data and password, along with a "zero-knowledge" privacy policy. This means that not only is your data encrypted (using a combination of 2048-bit RSA and 256-bit AES encryption) at every stage in the cloud storage process, but nobody--not even SpiderOak employees--can see what you've stored without your password. The downside to this ultra-secure service is that your password is also encrypted, so if you forget it, you will lose access to all of the files you've stored on SpiderOak's servers.

SpiderOak features a desktop client (available for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux) that allows you to store and access files through a special interface. Like Dropbox, SpiderOak also installs a folder on your computer where you can drag and drop files you want synced to the SpiderOak server. These files are accessible through the desktop client, SpiderOak's website, and its apps for Android and iOS.

Google Drive
Free storage: 15GB

Pricing: $5/month for 100GB, $10/month for 200GB, $20/month for 400GB, $50/month for 1TB, $100/month for 2TB, $200/month for 4TB, $400/month for 8TB, $800/month for 16TB

Best for: Collaboration

Google's cloud storage system, Google Drive, looks pretty attractive on the surface. After all, the service offers 15GB of free storage space--more than seven times the amount of free space Dropbox offers. But that 15GB limit is deceptive because it includes your Gmail account and any pictures you've stored on Google+. And, while Google Drive offers up to 16TB of online storage space, that option will cost you almost $10,000 a year.


1  2  3  Next Page 

Sign up for CIO Asia eNewsletters.