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7 well-known German cloud storage providers at a glance.
Friday, May 29, 2020

Cloud Storage — Made In Germany

7 Well-Known German Cloud Storage Providers At A Glance

With the GDPR coming into force in 2016 and its binding effect starting May 2018, Europe has set a benchmark for uniform data protection. Germany in particular has made a decisive contribution to the further development of a European data protection framework and the strengthening of consumer rights. But even before, Germany was already considered one of the countries with the highest data protection requirements and regulations worldwide.

It is therefore not surprising that the label “Made in Germany” is also of particular importance when choosing cloud storage space.

In fact, the major players that are mostly from the US, such as Microsoft, Dropbox or Google, have also taken some steps towards European data protection conformity. (A cloud storage comparison with the most popular international cloud services can be found here) Nevertheless, cloud providers based in Germany offer advantages to private users that cannot be denied.

The cloud storage providers we present in this article have the following points in common:

  1. The company’s headquarter and servers are located in Germany, which automatically makes them subject to strict German and European data protection regulations.
  2. A German court is responsible for all contractual and legal matters.
  3. The company offers support in German language. 

Telekom MagentaCLOUD

The headquarter of the company is in Bonn. Your personal data that you save in the MagentaCLOUD will be only stored in high security data centers in Germany.

What MagentaCLOUD offers private users: All Telekom newbies get 3 GB of free storage with the MagentaCLOUD free account. Those who already have a mobile or fixed network contract with Deutsche Telekom receive 15 GB free of charge. From 1.95 euros per month, 100 GB are available in the MagentaCLOUD M package.

Company Information: The Telekom Deutschland AG is Europe’s largest telecommunications company and provides both consumers and business customers with a comprehensive range of fixed-network and mobile services.

Security: MagentaCLOUD offers strong access protection and tested cloud security. Since 2004, the security of the data centers has been certified annually by the TÜV (German Association for Technical Inspection) with the ISO 27001 certificate. Moreover, MagentaCLOUD has received the seal “Tested Cloud Security” from TÜV Saarland. If you upload data to the cloud, it is secured by TLS/SSL on the way from your computer to the data center. An additional end-to-end encryption, with which you can encrypt your data before you upload it to the cloud, is provided; however, only when using MagentaCLOUD XL or XXL (starting at 10 euros per month).

Our recommendation: If you want to encrypt your data but do not want to upgrade to MagentaCLOUD XL, our encryption software Boxcryptor offers a remedy. With the Boxcryptor free account you can encrypt your data at MagentaCLOUD and access it from two devices. The software encrypts your data in the background before uploading it to MagentaCLOUD, and only you know the password. This way nobody but you can view the data.

Devices: MagentaCLOUD is available for Windows and macOS as well as for iOS, Android and the Windows Phone.

Share files: Sharing files that you have stored in the cloud is possible via link. This allows you to share data or — after giving permissions — to work on documents together with friends and acquaintances. Optionally, you can protect the shared data with a password.

Cloud Synchronization: Thanks to the offline and synchronization function of MagentaCLOUD you can access your files even without an Internet connection and keep them up to date.

Other features: The Telekom email center allows you to attach and send data to emails directly from the cloud. Pictures, music and videos can also be accessed via TV with the MagentaCLOUD TV app. In addition, data from surveillance cameras that you use via Magenta Smart Home can be stored directly in the cloud.

Here you can find the provider: MagentaCLOUD

Strato HiDrive — The Cloud Storage for your Photos, Videos & Files

The company is located in Berlin and operates two TÜV-certified data centers with over 70,000 servers in Berlin and Karlsruhe.

What Strato HiDrive offers private users: The cloud storage HiDrive can be tested free of charge for one month. After that you can either decide on the most cost-effective package with 250 GB for 3 euros per month or take one of the three other packages, which are priced between 5 and 18 euros per month. Each package includes one user and has a minimum term of 12 months.

Company Information: STRATO AG, like GMX, Web.de or 1&1 IONOS, is part of the United Internet Group. In addition to web hosting, the company also offers HiDrive cloud storage. With over 3.8 million registered platform users, HiDrive describes itself as “Germany's largest cloud storage” according to its own website. Also worth mentioning, is the company's commitment to green electricity. The two data centers are operated completely climate-neutral.

Security: Both data centers are ISO 27001 certified. In addition, secure data transmission is carried out using SSL 256-bit encryption and AES 128-encrypted storage. There is the option of end-to-end encryption of files, though only for an extra fee of 2 euros per month. A higher level of security by logging in using a second factor (two-factor authentication) is not possible.

Devices: Strato HiDrive can be used on desktop via Windows or macOS as well as on mobile via the iOS, Android or Windows app.

Share files: Files or folders can be shared via link — optionally password protected, with an expiry date or a download limit.

Cloud Synchronization: With the help of a sync software that you can install for free, folders and content that you use and modify offline are automatically updated as soon as your computer is connected to the Internet again. Automatic backups are also created.

Further functions: If you wish, you can control HiDrive with voice commands via Alexa.

Here you can find the service provider: Strato HiDrive

1&1 IONOS HiDrive - Back Up Data Online

1&1 IONOS is located in Montabaur (Rhineland-Palatinate). The data centers used for online storage are operated in Germany. However, the company has a total of ten geo-redundant data centers in Germany, Europe and the USA.

What 1&1 IONOS HiDrive offers private users: There is no such thing as a free account or trial period, but 1&1 IONOS is advertising with its bargain of 100 GB storage for 1 euro per month for the first 12 months. Afterwards, you pay 2 euros per month. The offer includes one user and the service of an automatic cloud backup. You can always increase the number of users, for 3 euros for 3 users and 250 GB per month.

Company Information: In 2018, the brand IONOS by 1&1 was created from the merger of 1&1 Internet and the Berlin IaaS provider ProfitBricks. The online storage HiDrive is formed from the cloud storage of the German host Strato and the service of 1&1 IONOS.

Security: Besides ISO certification 27001 (TÜV) of the data centers, IONOS offers security by using SSL-256 as well as AES-128 encrypted storage of your data. Furthermore, you can use two-factor authentication. The option of end-to-end encryption for your data is only available with HiDrive Pro or an even higher plan.

Devices: You can access the cloud storage via the Windows desktop application as well as an Android and iOS app. A special HiDrive software for macOS and Linux desktop systems is currently not available. However, in this case you can access the web browser or using WebDAV.

Sharing files: Simple file sharing is possible via link with additional protection by a password.

Other functions: With 1&1 IONOS you can not only store data in the cloud, but also buy domains, create your own homepage or rent web space for your own website project.

Click here to go to the provider: IONOS HiDrive

mailbox.org Cloud Storage “Drive” — Secure, Anonymous, Ad-Free

Both, the company headquarter and the two data centers are located in Berlin.

What mailbox.org Cloud Storage offers private users: You can start with a free trial for 30 days. Afterwards, you receive 25 GB of mail storage as well as 25 GB of cloud storage from 4.50 euros per month.

Company Information: The mailbox.org cloud storage “Drive” is provided by the Berlin-based family business Heinlein Support GmbH. The approximately 30 team members at Heinlein Support are one of the best-known and most sought-after network, Linux, and email specialists in Germany. The company focuses on their secure webmail offering. Heinlein Support GmbH supplies their data center with green electricity.

Security: The company has made it its business to offer secure, ad-free, anonymous and tracking-free email accounts for private and business customers. For security reasons, only open source components are used. Users of the cloud storage can encrypt files with a personal PGP key (Pretty Good Privacy). Encryption and decryption are carried out on the server, which means that there is no complete end-to-end encryption.

By the way, you can pay the monthly fee for the cloud and mail storage anonymously via Bitcoin, cash by mail or cash deposit to the bank account, if desired.

How to share files: Files from the Drive can be inserted directly or as a time-limited download link in emails.

Go to the provider: mailbox.org Drive

OwnCloud — Exchange Data Securely!

The company OwnCloud is based in Nuremberg. Personal data that you store in the cloud storage ownCloud.online is stored only on German servers.

What ownCloud.online offers private users: Within a 14-day trial period, the online storage can be used free of charge. After that, individuals pay 15 euros and teams of five or more people pay 13 euros per person and month. As an individual user, 500 GB are available, as a joined team 1,000 GB, plus another 200 GB per user.

Company Information: With 100 million users worldwide, OwnCloud is the market leader for open source solutions in the field of content collaboration platforms.

Security: OwnCloud.online is ISO 27001 certified and GDPR compliant. The data transfer is encrypted (TLS AES 256). Client-based end-to-end encryption with a predefined key in form of a password or smart card is also activated. In addition, there is the possibility of using two-factor authentication.

Devices: Your data in OwnCloud’s online storage can be accessed via Windows, macOS, Linux and the mobile apps for iOS and Android (the mobile apps are not available free of charge).

How to share files: Sharing files with friends and acquaintances is possible via link. Optionally, you can choose a password and set different access rights or an expiration date.

Cloud Synchronization: Features include automatic synchronization of files and folders. However, you retain control over the default synchronization behavior for new files and folders, and you can, for example, set the maximum file size for synchronization.

Other features: The cloud storage can be integrated into Outlook. Instead of an email attachment, the Outlook plug-in then automatically links to the corresponding file in OwnCloud.

Here you can find the provider: ownCloud.online

GMX Cloud and WEB.DE — Secure & Free Online Storage

The company behind the GMX and WEB.DE cloud is 1&1 Mail & Media GmbH with a branch office in Karlsruhe and headquarter in Montabaur. Data is stored exclusively in data centers located in Germany.

What GMX and WEB.DE Cloud offers private users: With the free registration at GMX FreeMail or WEB.DE you will receive 2 GB cloud storage space. This can be expanded by 2 GB each time you install the mail app and online storage for Windows and make your first upload to the cloud. Hence, you have the opportunity to acquire up to 8 GB of free cloud storage.

Security: All data that you upload to the cloud is SSL encrypted throughout. In addition, GMX and WEB.DE offer their 30 million private customers the possibility to encrypt particularly sensitive data such as invoices or private vacation photos end-to-end by storing them in a so-called “Tresor” which can be installed for Windows 7, 8 and 10.

Our recommendation: The functionality of the encrypted “Tresor” is limited. If you need more features and options when working with your securely encrypted data, Boxcryptor might be a good alternative for you. It allows you to encrypt your complete WEB.DE or GMX cloud, and to work with your cloud data almost without limitations.

Devices: You have access to the GMX and WEB.DE cloud via the Android and iOS apps as well as on Windows. With a Mac, access is only possible via WebDAV.

File Sharing: Sharing files is possible via a share link, which you can additionally protect by assigning a PIN or by setting a time limit for sharing.

Cloud Synchronization: Offline editing of photos and videos is possible. An automated data saving of your videos and photos ensures a regular backup.

Other functions: Besides the familiar e-mail inboxes, GMX and WEB.DE provide you with an address book and a calendar.

Here you can find the providers: WEB.DE and GMX

Conclusion

As you can see, there are several cloud providers in Germany who have an interesting offer. Nevertheless, there is not one perfect cloud. The important thing is to find the cloud that best suits your needs.

You decide which provider best meets your requirements. But no matter which cloud solution (or solutions) you choose, you should always pay attention to the security of your private data. We strongly recommend that you encrypt the data on your smartphone or computer before you upload it in the cloud. Furthermore, the cloud provider must not have the keys to decrypt the data at any time. These should only be in your hands.

With the Boxcryptor encryption software, you ensure that no third party can access your data. Boxcryptor encrypts your private data directly on your device before it is transferred to your cloud provider. Since the software is exclusively specialized in encrypting your data in the cloud, it offers several advantages, such as user-friendly handling and sophisticated data protection precautions with which you can secure data not only within the storage device itself, as it is the case with the WEB.DE “Tresor”, but also when you want to share files with third parties. If you use several cloud providers or want to switch from one provider to another, Boxcryptor also allows you to do this easily without giving involuntary insights into your data.

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