I would like to thank Parentslate.com for posting this article for their readers to take a look at. I have found the website to be a great resource for parenting and any parenting-related questions I may have. In particular I found this article about getting out with the kids a particularly useful read.
Any parent wants to save the previous memories of their children, and photography has been and will always be one of the best ways to do that. There are few joys like catching that perfect moment on film (or with a digital camera), and of course you want to hold onto those photos forever.
It is for that reason (or so that future and younger generations will be able to see the past) that you will want to make sure that your files stay safe. I would like to share the following pieces of advice with you so that nothing ever happens to your precious memories:
Use Physical Media
When you are storing your photos, you probably have an SD card that you use with your camera and printer. This is a good thing to have, but you also want to have another bit of physical media or storage space to hold all of your photos in case your computer breaks down and your SD card is full from taking so many photos.
You can use a flash drive (very inexpensive), get a second SD card just for storage (also inexpensive), find yourself an external hard drive (preferably a SSD as they are less likely to break down), or use a series of disks. Your options will get easier and cheaper as time goes on, and you may want to transfer over to a newer technology every five years or so just to be compatible and safe. Also, as long as you keep the physical device secure, you will not have to worry about anyone else looking at your family photos unless you want them to.
Use a Cloud Service
While physical media is probably your best option in terms of having control over your pictures, the benefits of the cloud cannot be ignored. You have the ability to easily send pictures to other people, which is great for interested relatives. You also tend to have a good deal of storage space (more than you’ll likely ever need), and you can connect to them with multiple devices and possibly save a photo taken on your phone directly to your cloud service.
However, you will want to be careful as to which service you pick as you will want to make sure that those photos are secure and that no one unwanted can get to them. Most are perfectly fine, but you’ll want to read up on which ones are the best for you.
Redundancy is Your Friend
If you are ever concerned about one of the above options failing, just remember that redundancy can be your friend when it comes to protecting your files. If you are worried about having only one flash drive, then get another and make a duplicate set of files. If you are worried about using only one cloud service, then try to find another that is safe enough and fits your budget. It takes very little time, you can have multiple points of access, and you can feel better knowing that while something may go wrong, it is unlikely that everything will go wrong.
Have Some Security Tools in Place
There are always tools out there to help protect you. If you are worried about your flash drive getting stolen, then get one that is password protected or has a combination mechanism. Make sure that you have a good firewall program and security suite. Search around for what you think would work best for your computer and your needs.
Also, if you are taking photos on your smartphone and then uploading them to the cloud, you might want to consider getting a VPN, such as ExpressVPN, for the sake of security. Otherwise, depending on the network you are using, your photos might get intercepted by hackers and other cyber-criminals.
Practice Good Internet Security
When you are working with such important things as your photos, you want to take the precautions that you would with any computer. Make sure you use the best passwords you can think of, update your computer and security programs regularly, don’t leave anything lying around that might compromise your security, and don’t give out personal information over the internet.
Most importantly though, you just need to think critically about the internet environment you are in. When you are browsing or doing something else, just ask yourself what is going on and is anything trying to trick you. If you can answer that question, you’re in good shape.
Thank you for reading, and I hope that these tips will help you and your family safely keep precious memories for decades to come.