More and more people are using cloud storage, but do you know where those data are stored? Big companies like Apple also use external storage services from Google and Amazon. And have you ever questioned whether your data is safe? Today’s article will help you analyze how Apple manages your data in your Icloud.
Your iCloud data management is everywhere
The phrase “cloud” has become popular for online data storage services. Providers use very large data centers to store your data, that data will be available on many other servers in a center to ensure that if the server is broken, the data will not be lost.
So you can rest assured that your data will not be lost when stored in the cloud.
You can use the cloud storage service for all your purposes. But iCloud will mainly store documents in iCloud Drive, synchronize data between devices and create the iCloud backup. But how does Apple handle that data and where is it stored?
Location of iCloud server
Apple has many data centers around the world. These servers are not always in Europe. Apple once planned to build a data center worth millions of euros in Ireland, but the plan was rejected because they did not receive a license there. However, other data centers are still under construction in Denmark.
In fact, if users in Europe use iCloud storage service, that does not mean that their data must be stored on European servers. An American company can store European user data on servers in the United States, even if it involves personal identification information (PII).
Under European regulations, companies must be able to prove that they will fully protect users’ privacy and data. This is not a problem at Apple, because, in iOS security documents, it is clear:
Each file will be divided into sections and encrypted by iCloud using AES-128 and SHA-256 encryption algorithms. The keys and metadata of the file are stored by Apple in the user’s iCloud account. The encrypted parts of the file do not contain any user-identifiable information, stored on third-party storage services, such as Amazon S3 or Google Cloud Platform.
Apple uses external storage service
Apple not only uses its own iCloud servers, but also uses external storage services such as Amazon and Google (since 2016). Previously, Apple also used Microsoft Azure, but it was no longer mentioned. Apple primarily refers to Amazon S3 and Google Cloud Platform services, but Apple is more likely to use more vendors.
Only in China, will you have a bit of trouble, because Apple has agreed to store all user data in this country on the servers of a state company, China Telecom.
Your data management on Google servers
When it comes to Apple storing your data on Google’s servers, what does that mean for you?
According to Apple, your data is encrypted and cannot be accessed for an individual user. Because that’s just a bit of information, Google can’t do much about it. They cannot decrypt them and cannot view your documents. If there is an order from the government asking to transfer your personal data to the government, only Apple can cooperate.
There is no exact location
Unfortunately, Apple’s iCloud can’t tell you exactly which files and your data are stored on the server. You also cannot specify that your data may only be stored in certain areas or you only want to use Apple’s data center. You do not have this control. Therefore, your data may be with Apple, Amazon, Google or other providers. Apple also puts a data center at Prineville. Still, you won’t see the Apple logo around their complex and Apple will never invite reporters to visit data centers like Facebook or others technology giants.
However, Apple ensures that everything is stored securely, through encryption. In addition, the keys and metadata of the file are only stored on Apple’s own server, not with Google. This is completely different when you use Google applications and services from your iPhone, because then all kinds of personal information from your device will be sent to Google.
Apple currently manages several data centers around the world. Obviously, they are not large enough to store all data from iCloud services. The number of data centers that Apple wants to manage will increase in the coming years, because Apple has announced it will spend $10 billion on new data centers in the US. Investing in Apple’s data center is published including expansion projects currently taking place at the company’s data center facilities in Maiden, North Carolina; Mesa, Arizona and Sparks, Nevada. It also includes the cost of a new data center in Bolognese, Iowa, where preparatory work is being built, the company said in a statement.
In addition to the three Apple data center facilities mentioned above, the company also has data centers in Newark, California and Prineville, Oregon and leases space in other locations from the data center’s server. It is also building a data center in Denmark and announces plans to build a second center there.
What do you think about how Apple stores your data? Do you feel safe when transferring data to an Apple store? Don’t forget to share those ideas in the comment section below.