How to safely store and share your documents
Online storage is everywhere, and for many people, storing information online is easy and convenient. However, most folks are concerned about the best way to store (and share) important documents with sensitive, or downright incredibly private, information.
Tips for storing your important documents and digital stuff:
1. Do it now: The 1-2 hours you spend now could very easily become at least 20+ hours, if not 100+ someone else has to try to dig through all your stuff to find it.
2. Contact information: Have an emergency contact list that includes spouses, family, close friends, and important people listed in your will and living will. List out their full name, phone, email and street address, and any other relevant information.
3. Round-up important documents: Create a file (digital or paper) of insurance policies, birth certificates, licenses and keep important documents handy, let a few people know where these are.
4. Accounts, usernames & passwords: Many of these accounts may use online banking or have emailed statements: note the company, url, username, password & account #’s if you have one.
Is storing documents online safe?
Read the full article Digital Accounts and Details Checklist for a comprehensive list of all the accounts to track down.
Once you have completed your documents (and rounded up your digital details) you’ll want to let a few trusted others know where or how to access it. Safely and securely, of course. There are a number of ways you can do this, options range from free, password protected locations in the cloud – to more secure or super-encrypted security for a monthly fee. Here are some options we’ve found GYST friends and readers like (and use).
Storage and password managers
The list below is compiled from reviews from PC Magazine articles here, here, and here, Lifehacker reviews here and here, a PC World review, and an unscientific round up of GYST reader’s and team favorites.
Free storage and file sharing
- Dropbox: Easy cloud-based file syncing and sharing.
- Google Drive: Easy cloud-based file syncing and sharing.
Subscription based security & encryption
- CertainSafe: A HIPPA compliant, digital vault for sensitive files.
- Carbonite: Personal and professional plans for storage and data protection.
- LastPass: A top-rated, free to low cost service to help remember your passwords so you don't have to.
- 1Password: A highly rated, low cost password manager, $5/month, easy interface, stores all your passwords, PIN codes, documents, credit cards and helps you save time on the web by signing in to accounts with a single click.