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Digital Toolbox: Securely storing files

Ohio University provides several file storage solutions for both standard data and protected data to facilitate effective collaboration while keeping information secure and shared only with those who need access.

The university offers the following solutions:

  • Individual OneDrive: Storage space allocated to each OHIO user. Files are private by default but can be shared manually. Files stored here may no longer be available after the individual leaves the university.
  • Group/Departmental OneDrive: Storage space allocated to a department or group. Group owners can configure members' read/write access to the files in this location. Files stored here will remain after the individual contributors are no longer with the university.
  • Home/Shared Network Folders: The Home section is private for each user, and the Shared Network folder is accessible by defined groups
  • Local storage: Refers to storage on your physical device(s), such as your computer's hard drive and other connected devices like USB thumb drives and external hard drives

To make an informed decision about where to safely store university data, consider the following and consult the chart below: 

  1. Does the file contain protected data?
  2. Do you need to collaborate or share the file with others?
  3. How do you want to access the file? 
  4. How long do you need to keep the file?

File storage comparison

I need to:  Individual OneDrive Group/Departmental OneDrive Home/Shared Network Folders Local Storage
Store or share files containing high-risk data, including Protected Health Information (PHI) or Personally Identifiable Information (PII) No

Yes, if configured for it.

Yes, requires purchase of PGP encryption software and configuration by OIT.

No

Store or share files containing high-risk data (No PHI or PII)

No

Yes, if configured for it.

Yes, requires purchase of PGP encryption software and configuration by OIT.

No

Store or work on files larger than 5 GB

Yes. Can be used for files up to 100GB in size.

Size is 1TB expandable to 5TB.

Yes

Yes

Yes

Collaborate with others to edit the same document at the same time

Yes

Yes

No

No

Access files from a mobile device

Yes

Yes

No

No

Access files when offline

Yes

Yes

Yes. Only available on Windows with offline files option. Not recommended.

No

Access files off-campus

Yes

Yes

Yes. Requires campus VPN.

No

Provide an individual with an OHIO ID access to a file or folder

Yes

Yes

Yes. Limited to department or team shared folders. Does not function like OneDrive sharing.

No

Provide an individual without an OHIO ID access to a file or folder

Yes

Yes, if not used for the storage of sensitive information

No

No