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Episode #69: Protecting Your Data, Part 1

Episode #69: Protecting Your Data, Part 1

The Most Affordable and Powerful Solution to Protect the Data on Your Computers and Mobile Devices.

The Real Question To Ask

Protecting data is a fascinating topic for me because everyone has different needs when it comes to this issue. Here, for example, are three, general categories of users:

  1. Those with jobs where the loss of even one day's work can mean the difference between nailing a new client or losing business.

  2. Those with children who’ve amassed thousands of photographs and videos of their families on their smartphones and computers.

  3. Those who just consider themselves to be “casual users” who only go online to check email, the news, and perhaps social media.

But no matter the category, there is one, central goal that unites us all:

We need to protect our data.

“Oh, come on, David,” say the doubters (and “Oh, posh!” say the British doubters). “I don’t have anything valuable enough to protect.”

Oh, yes, you do. You’ve got very valuable data to protect, something I’ll explain in just a bit. But let’s not focus on the question of “Do I have valuable data to protect?”

Instead, we need to focus on this question: “Which of my data needs protecting?”

Glad you asked. Let’s dig in.

What Needs Protecting?

The question of what we each need to protect has different answers depending on who we are, what we do professionally, and what we think is not replaceable should it be lost. For example…

A few of us have access to restricted or classified materials, accessible only to people with the proper background checks or elevated security clearance.

A few of us have access to trade documents that, in the wrong hands, might be copied and brought to market by competitors.

Many of us with full-time jobs have access to any number of internal memos, documents, and other business-related files that aren’t meant for the general public.

Most of us have reams of personal data in the form of contacts, photos, videos, and other creative projects we’ve made.

All of us have communications - both digital and analog - that we consider private, including those in the privacy of our own homes or those we have with professionals concerning our medical, financial, and legal records.

And, lastly, all of us have our own address & phone numbers, social security or government numbers, and more.

ALL of these data need protecting.

Therefore, let’s discuss the following:

  • How do we protect the various kinds of data we possess?

  • What are the most affordable, efficient, and simple products, services, and approaches to protecting our data?

Protecting The Data on Our Computers & Mobile Devices

My family and I use iDrive for backing up all of our data

If you have computers and mobile devices, then you’ve got very valuable - and often private - data you keep there. Protecting this data not only means that you need backups, but also that you need the right KIND of backups.

For me, backup solutions MUST meet these four, key criteria:

  1. They’re easy to use

  2. They’re free or affordable

  3. They’re secure

  4. They’re failproof

For example, some of you connect external hard drives to your computers and then use Apple’s Time Machine or Windows Backup & Restore to back up your data. This is called having a “local” backup and it’s an excellent way to explore the world of protecting your data.

But having local backups is neither failproof nor secure. They cannot protect your data in the event of theft, vandalism, fires and other natural disasters, or simultaneous malfunctions on both your computer and backup drive.

Therefore, we need to think as a corporation thinks and give ourselves redundant “offsite” (or non-local) backups.

For five years, my family has used iDrive (affiliate link here) as our secure backup solution. It’s an easy-to-use application and service which backs up all of our data OVER THE INTERNET and into the company’s data centers. That allows iDrive to distribute our data between different hard drives, on different servers, and in different data centers, which are in different locations.

Backups of backups of backups. This is known as having multiple “redundancies” and it ensures that our data are always available, even in the event of a catastrophic failure.

The software works amazingly well on all desktop and mobile operating systems which is convenient because iDrive’s yearly fee isn’t charged per user: it’s charged based on the block of storage you purchase from them.

That means you can back up as many computers and mobile devices as you can for your yearly iDrive fee.

That’s a nice touch.

Normally, pricing for 5 TB of storage (that’s 5,000 GB) is $79.50/year, but as one of their affiliate sellers, I get access to some great discounts. I can share one of those today: my readers can get a 95% discount for their first year of using iDrive. No, that’s not an error: you’ll pay $7.95 for your first year of backups when you use this link. Sadly, this is something I never got when I first started paying for iDrive back in March of 2018. 😂

Click to save 90% off the 1st year!

As for security, well… iDrive adds two features that I love:

  1. The ability to protect your log in with two-factor authentication, something I always recommend and wrote about back in Episode #36.

  2. Their use of a second password which they use to encrypt & decrypt your data. That allows your data to be kept secure from everyone, even from the company.

iDrive easily meets my four requirements for a backup solution and is absolutely worth the peace of mind that comes from knowing that my data is protected and safe.

Oh, and you ALSO want to have local backups to a hard drive, well… iDrive lets you do that too.


And that’s a wrap for today’s episode, everyone. Thank you for subscribing and supporting independent technology journalism. I’m in the middle of my “Fall Pledge Drive” and - for a limited time - I’m offering a 20% discount on subscribing. Become a paid subscriber and gain access to all current and previous episodes, including all of our audio and video content.

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Tech Talk - The Technology Newsletter for Everyone
Tech Talk - The Tech Podcast... for Everyone
TechTalk is a podcast that's meant to help absolute beginners and non-technical people learn about technology in a fun and informative way. We don't talk over your head! Instead, we use everyday language to make sure that you understand all of the important subjects and challenges that we discuss. Tech is important: let's learn about it together in a fun and funny way.