What Megaupload's Demise Teaches about Cloud Storage
Takedown of the file-sharing site over copyright violations provides a warning about being careful where you store stuff.
PC World - Megaupload users are crying foul after their personal files, not necessarily copyright-infringing material, stored with the file-sharing service was seized on Thursday along with a trove of illegally distributed copyrighted works.
Some of those users took to Twitter complaining about the loss of their files, as first reported by TorrentFreak. "I had files up there...gone forever..and they were personal recordings! No copyright infringement!" said Twitter user J. Amir. Another user complained that her work files were now gone, and others used more colorful language to describe their predicament.
The Megaupload seizure shows how personal files hosted on remote servers operated by a third party can easily be caught up in a government raid targeted at digital pirates. But perhaps more importantly, the demise of Megaupload shows that you must be careful about where you trust your data, when picking a cloud service.
The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation called the Megaupload seizure and the arrests of four of its key employees in New Zealand one of the "largest criminal copyright cases ever brought by the United States." Federal authorities, dubbing the alleged criminal acts the "Mega Conspiracy," accuse the site of harming copyright holders in excess of $500 million in damages and claim Megaupload earned more than $175 million for its investors and employees.
Before its closure Megaupload had 180 million registered users and an average of 50 million daily visits, claimed a total visitor history of more than one billion, and accounted for about four percent of all global Internet traffic, according to the indictment filed in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Virginia.
Megaupload was one of many sites run by the company including Megavideo, a popular site for finding free streaming video of pirated television shows and movies.
Megaupload's Storage Policies
It's not clear how many of Megaupload's 180 million registered users relied on the company to store non-copyright-infringing personal files, but it appears at least some people were. Megaupload may not have been the most trustworthy service to rely on for long term data storage.
The Mega Conspiracy indictment says that non-registered free users would have to download their files at least once every 21 days or Megaupload would delete the content. Registered free users had to download their files at least once every 90 days or their data would also be deleted. Paying users, however, could store files for as long as they wanted without downloading as long as they continued to pay for a premium membership.
Picking a Cloud
Regardless of Megaupload's policies, it appears at least some users were storing files with the company and not bothering to back up the files on a local hard drive. As these users recently discovered, it turns out to be a bad idea to store files with aA cloud service that allegedly relies on piracy for a big part of its revenue.
- Enable secure remote access to 3D data without sacrificing visual perfomance Design and manufacturing companies must adapt quickly to the demands of an increasingly global and competitive economy. To speed time to market for...
- Virtually Delivered High Performance 3D Graphics "A picture is worth a thousand words." That old phrase is as true today as it ever was. Pictures (i.e., those with heavy...
- Best Practices for Securing Hadoop Historically, Apache Hadoop has provided limited security capabilities. To protect sensitive data being stored and analyzed in Hadoop, security architects should use a...
- Top Tips for Securing Big Data Environments: Why Big Data Doesn't Have to Mean Big Security Challenges Organizations must come to terms with the security challenges they introduce. As big data environments ingest more data, organizations will face significant risks...
- What should I look for in a Next Generation Firewall? SANS Provides Guidance With so many vendors claiming to have a Next Generation Firewall (NGFW), it can be difficult to tell what makes each one different....
- Responding to New SSL Cybersecurity Threat The featured Gartner research examines current strategies to address new SSL cybersecurity threats and vulnerabilities. All Security White Papers | Webcasts
Our new bimonthly Internet of Things newsletter helps you keep pace with the rapidly evolving technologies, trends and developments related to the IoT. Subscribe now and stay up to date!