Categories: Technology
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2023-11-24 8:50 AM

Proton Drive Unleashes Mac Privacy Powerhouse: Full Encryption, Seamless Syncing, and Future-Ready Innovations

  • Proton Drive Expansion: Proton, a Swiss privacy-focused company, extends its encrypted cloud storage service to Mac users, enhancing cross-platform accessibility.
  • Default Full Encryption: Proton Drive distinguishes itself with default full encryption for files, metadata, and names, prioritizing user privacy.
  • Affordable Plans and Future Enhancements: Proton Drive offers free 1GB storage, with paid plans starting at $4/month, including advanced features. Future updates promise expanded syncing options and open-source availability.
By Lethabo Ntsoane

In a significant move to enhance digital privacy, Proton, a Swiss privacy-focused company, has recently launched its end-to-end encrypted (E2EE) cloud storage service for Mac users. This expansion comes four months after the service landed on Windows, marking a pivotal step in Proton’s mission to provide secure and privacy-focused alternatives to mainstream digital services.

Proton’s Evolution: From Email to Comprehensive Privacy Suite

Founded nine years ago, Proton initially gained recognition for its flagship Gmail alternative, Proton Mail. Over the years, the company has expanded its portfolio to include a variety of privacy-focused services, ranging from Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) to a password manager, calendar, and now, cloud storage.

Proton Drive: A Cross-Platform Privacy Solution

Proton Drive made its debut on the web in September, with native mobile apps following in December and Windows integration in July. With the recent launch for Mac, Proton Drive is now a fully cross-platform solution, allowing users to synchronize their data seamlessly across all their devices.

Privacy at the Core: Full Encryption by Default

Proton Drive positions itself as a privacy-centric alternative to mainstream cloud storage services, including Apple’s iCloud. While Apple recently introduced end-to-end encryption for certain types of data on iCloud, Proton Drive takes a more comprehensive approach. The service promises full encryption for files and folders by default, encompassing metadata and file names. This default encryption ensures that user data is secure from the moment it is uploaded to the cloud.

FeatureProton DriveApple iCloud
Default EncryptionFull encryption for files, metadata, and namesEnd-to-end encryption for select data types, requires manual activation by users
Cross-Platform AvailabilityAvailable on web, mobile, Windows, and MacIntegrated into Apple ecosystem with cross-device synchronization
Free Storage1GB5GB (basic free plan)
Paid PlansStarting at $4/month for 200GBStarting at $0.99/month for 50GB

Proton Drive Features and Plans

Proton Drive offers a starting storage capacity of 1GB for free, allowing users to experience the service before committing to a paid plan. Paid plans begin at $4 per month, providing 200GB of storage and additional features. These features include the ability to automatically store previous versions of a file for up to 10 years, enhancing data versioning and recovery capabilities.

PlanStorageMonthly CostAdditional Features
Free1GB$0Basic storage with full encryption
Standard200GB$4Automatic file versioning for up to 10 years
Plus2TB$24Advanced features, expanded storage capacity

Current Limitations and Future Developments

While Proton Drive for Mac currently syncs only the files stored in the designated Proton Drive folder, the company is actively working on expanding this functionality. Users can expect future updates that enable synchronization for any local folder, providing more flexibility in managing their data.

Proton has a history of open-sourcing its applications, allowing third parties, including security researchers, to inspect the underlying code. However, the Proton Drive Mac app is not yet open source. Proton has assured users that this will change in due course, aligning with the company’s commitment to transparency.

Looking Ahead: Linux Integration on the Long-Term Roadmap

For Linux users, Proton has indicated that integration with the Linux operating system is on its long-term roadmap. While specific timelines have not been provided, Proton Drive aims to extend its cross-platform availability to cater to a broader user base.

Proton Drive’s expansion to Mac users marks a significant stride in the company’s mission to provide users with secure and private alternatives to mainstream cloud storage services. The default full encryption, coupled with user-friendly features and cross-platform availability, positions Proton Drive as a compelling choice for individuals seeking heightened digital privacy. As the service continues to evolve, users can anticipate further improvements and expanded compatibility, reinforcing Proton’s commitment to privacy in the digital age.

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Lethabo Ntsoane

Lethabo Ntsoane holds a Bachelors Degree in Accounting from the University of South Africa. He is a Financial Product commentator at Rateweb. He is an expect financial product analyst with years of experience in reviewing products and offering commentary. Lethabo majors in financial news, reviews and financial tips. He can be contacted: Email: lethabo@rateweb.co.za Twitter: @NtsoaneLethabo