What is Object Storage?
Object Storage, which is also known as Object-based Storage, is a method by which data is organized in such a way that preserves information about the content as well as the context of the data. Unlike traditional file folder or directory hierarchies, data stored as an object exists on the same level as other objects. Object-based storage is common among cloud-based storage services.
Commercial cloud-based object storage services include Amazon’s AWS S3 and Dropbox, for example. These services have great appeal for collaborative uses as it allows file sharing across multiple users. This may be great for storage, but these systems should not be relied upon as a sole method of data backup and recovery for your business. (Note, this topic will explored further in future blog posts and RenovoData publications.)
In general, object storage systems allow relatively inexpensive, self-healing and scalable retention of huge amounts of unstructured data. Also, object storage allows for the addressing and identification of individual objects by a unique identifier instead of just a filename and file path. This gives users more flexibility with naming conventions, for example, as the system can distinguish between unique data even if the file name is in use somewhere else.
Like many systems, cloud-based object storage services have vulnerabilities. For instance, all a data thief would need to do is crack a user’s login credentials to gain access. A survey conducted by ZDNet in 2011 found that up to 60 percent of users use the same password across more than one account. For this reason, services such as LastPass are gaining in popularity as it may alleviate the potential headache of remembering unique and sometimes complicated password combinations. Being locked out of your data is just about as bad as losing it!
If you have questions about cloud-based storage, object storage, or concerns about your company’s risk exposure, be sure to email us. We would be happy to share our recommendations!