Could you please recommend some alternatives to Google Drive? I am concerned about my privacy, security; plus I need to have an Android, OS X, and a web client as well. If there are such alternatives I would like to choose the one with the best user experience. End-to-end encryption is a big plus.

I already considered Bitcasa and Tresorit, both of which I have some serious problems:

  • I read that Tresorit's EULA contains that it might use "trusted third-party services" to store my data, "including Microsoft". As for as I am concerned, Microsoft should not be considered as trusted. Something else from the terms of use:

    "You agree that Tresorit may also transmit any data stored by You to a third party if Tresorit has a reason to believe that it is required:

    7.1. To comply with any law or order issued by any legal authority. 7.2. To avoid infringement of the rights of a third party."

    If the data stored should be encrypted and supposedly non-accessible by them, how does it make sense?

  • I read about a user of Bitcasa who found that it sends the encryption key to the server in plaintext. That is something quite different from end-to-end. :O Also it's not zero knowledge policy. Bitcasa's "convergent cryptography" also concerned me.


6 Answers 6


You could take a look at Seafile:

  • Open Source (hosted on Github)
  • Can be used with your own server – which should answer your privacy issue
  • Is cross-platform (Android, iPad/iPhone, OSX, Linux, RasPi, and Windows are supported)
  • It's often advertized as "Open Source alternative to Dropbox"

As there are no depencies to third-parties (except concerning "where the source comes from", of course), no EULAs should come up as barriers here.

Also worth a look: ownCloud, which gives you additional self-hosted services like contacts, calendar, and more. Again multi-platform and Open Source, running on your own server.

Seafile ownCloud
Seafile (source), ownCloud (source; click images for larger variants)

In both cases, if you don't have your own server, you can have it run on a hosted service as well. ownCloud can be installed on any webspace (not sure if this applies to Seafile as well), but both projects offer to host your files as well, if you want to.


Basically you are looking for a cloud storage with client-side encryption.

You can use Wuala:

  • client for Windows, Linux, Mac OSX, iOS, and Android
  • 5 GB free
  • online storage
  • All files get encrypted and are stored redundantly. No one unauthorized - not even Wuala as the provider - can access the files (in other words, encryption is client-side).

    Dam, Martin, and Kaifei Chen. "On the Security of Cloud Storage Services." :

    This project clearly shows that the architectural design of a system is very important, especially when it comes to security. As seen in the figures below, Wuala uses a client-side encryption which ensure total privacy for the user, whereas the other tested Cloud Storage providers (like Dropbox) uses server side encryption. This means that Dropbox as a company has access to the users files. The server side encryption is to prevent unauthorized access in case of a single system compromise.

    encryption architecture of tools using server-side encryption

    encryption architecture of Wuala using client-side encryption

  • decent GUI:

    screenshot of Wuala’s GUI

  • What I don't like about Wuala, is that the web client requires Java (probably for the end-to-end encryption).
    – Robin
    Jul 10, 2014 at 9:38
  • @Robin also probably for make cross-platform easier. Jul 10, 2014 at 15:11
  • 2
    Afraid this is no longer an option, as Wuala shut down its services in 2015.
    – Izzy
    Mar 10, 2017 at 12:34

Not that I am too concerned about privacy but I understand your concerns. I use Dropbox for random stuff and I use Mega for more secure data. https://mega.co.nz/. They have a Google Drive like experience. Although I cannot explain all the technical encryption stuff, they are a company where privacy is part of their mission.

Although the last person recommended owncloud where you host your own private cloud which at least you can manage and host the data yourself.


When I thought about your question, I thought of Dropbox.

Wherever you are

Put your stuff in Dropbox and get to it from your computers, phones, or tablets. Edit docs, automatically add photos, and show off videos from anywhere.

Share with confidence

Share photos with friends. Work with your team like you're using a single computer. Everything's automatically private, so you control who sees what.

Safe and secure

Even if your phone goes for a swim, your stuff is always safe in Dropbox and can be restored in a snap. Dropbox secures your files with 256-bit AES encryption and two-step verification.

Dropbox for Business

Millions of people use Dropbox at work. With Dropbox for Business, get the power and security of Dropbox plus robust admin controls, dedicated support, and all the space you need. Learn about Dropbox for Business.

Drop box is supported both on mobile devices such as Android, iPhone, iPad, Blackberry and Kindlefire. On OSX and Windows, a desktop client is required. On mobile devices, if you do not want to use their official Dropbox App, you can use a mobile friendly web interface at m.dropbox.com.

Link to download for Android is here

Link to download for OSX is here

The only suck thing about it is this:

Dropbox Basic accounts start with 2 GB of free space. You can earn more free space in a variety of ways. For example, by referring your friends to Dropbox, you can earn up to 16 GB of additional space.


You can use SpiderOak:

enter image description here


There is the German HiDrive. This has apps for Android, iOS and Windows Phone and can also be accessed via WebDAV.

User's data is stored within the EU so the sales blurb claims that it is covered by EU data protection legislation.

Data is stored and transmitted in encrypted form.

Sharing amongst users is possible.

As with the well known services, you get a certain amount of free space (5Gb) and can pay for more.

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