Unlocking the power of Cloud photo storage: benefits, security & tips

Whether you are enjoying some spectacular scenery or celebrating a special event with your nearest and dearest, we bet you are taking lots of photos! But how do you save these precious memories safely and share them with others? Today we show you how it’s done – with mail.com’s free cloud storage for photos and more!

by Alyssa Schmitt

Three generations of family take selfie together
Take advantage of the mail.com Cloud picture storage to manage your family photos

What are the benefits of using cloud photo storage?

  • It’s free! That’s right, your mail.com account comes with 2 GB of free cloud storage, so you can try out the benefits of storing your photos in the cloud at no additional cost. And if you like cloud photo storage so much that you want more space, we offer attractive Cloud upgrades.
  • Accessible from anywhere: As long as you have an internet connection, you can log into your cloud storage to show off your latest pics or take a stroll down memory lane.  
  • Synchronization across devices: The accessibility of cloud storage means you can look at your pics on other devices besides your phone. For example, photos that you upload to the mail.com Cloud will be accessible in the mail.com Mail app and when you log in using a computer browser.
  • Automatic backups: When you take photos on your phone, there is always the risk of losing them if your phone is damaged, stolen or lost. Backing up your photos to cloud storage is a great way to keep them safe. And it’s possible to set up automated backups so you have one less thing to worry about – e.g., with the mail.com Mail & Cloud apps.
Bonus explainer: If you’d like more details on backing up your photos on your phone with mail.com, see our explainer: Automatic photo upload with the mail.com mobile apps

But is cloud photo storage secure?

Some people worry that storing their photos in the cloud is not safe, and we get it! It can be hard to entrust your family photos to a remote server rather than to a device you can hold in your own hand. Plus we have all heard stories of photos being stolen in data breaches.

However, cloud storage actually offers less risks than a medium like a hard drive, phone, or USB stick that can be lost or physically damaged. Cloud storage providers like mail.com routinely back up your data on multiple servers and uphold strict data protection standards. Make sure that you choose a reputable provider for your cloud photo storage and protect your account with a unique, strong password.

How to use the Cloud for photo storage

Now that we’ve convinced you that our cloud is the right place for your photos, here are some tips for how to use it!

How to upload and back up photos

mail.com knows that when it comes to storing and sharing photos, everyone has different preferences and ways of working. So we offer several options for uploading and managing your photos. Check out the list below to see which one(s) work best for you!
  1. Upload photos from smartphone to Cloud in mail.com app
  2. Upload photos from hard drive to Cloud in web browser
  3. Upload photos from smartphone to Cloud in web browser
  4. Create folders to organize your photos
  5. Share photos with trusted contacts

Uploading photos in the mail.com app

If you have the mail.com app installed on your smartphone or tablet, you can upload photos directly from your device to the mail.com Cloud in just a few taps. Simply open the mail.com app and tap the Cloud tab at the bottom of the screen. Tapping the + symbol gives you the option of picking photos from your device to upload to your cloud, taking a new photo and saving it to your cloud, or creating a folder to keep your cloud organized. You can also activate automatic backing up of photos and/or videos on your device to the mail.com Cloud.

Uploading photos In your web browser from your hard drive

If you like logging into your mail.com account in your web browser, you’ll be pleased to learn that there are several ways to upload, save and share photos here. First things first: Open your preferred web browser and log in to mail.com as usual. Then click the Cloud symbol in the upper navigation bar to access your online storage. If you have already saved the photos from your smartphone or camera to your computer, you now have two easy options for uploading them to your cloud picture storage:
  1. Click on the Upload button in the upper left corner of the Cloud screen and select Upload photos or Upload folder from the drop-down menu that appears. A window will open showing the files on your computer hard drive. Select the photos you wish to upload and click Open.
  2. Or if your Windows File Explorer is open, you can simply drag and drop the photo(s) into your opened Cloud.
Whichever method you use, the photos will now be saved in your cloud. They will remain on your computer’s hard drive, but a copy will also be stored on the mail.com remote server. This means you can access and share the uploaded photos anytime or anywhere you have an internet connection – and you won’t lose them if your hard drive is damaged by a power surge or computer virus.

Uploading photos in your web browser from your smartphone

But what if the photos you want to upload are still on your smartphone and you’d like to skip the step of transferring them to your computer hard drive? No problem – you can upload them directly from your smartphone to your online photo storage using a QR code:
  1. In the Cloud tab of your mail.com email account, click on the Upload button in the upper left corner of the Cloud screen and select Upload from smartphone from the drop-down menu that appears.
  2. A QR code and a password will appear
  3. Open your smartphone’s camera app, hold up your smartphone to the screen so the QR code appears in the viewfinder, and click on the web link that pops up.
  4. A window will appear asking you to enter the password (you’ll find it under the QR code on your browser screen). Enter it and press Verify password.
  5. Now tap Select file and choose Photo Library.
  6. Select the photos you’d like to upload to your mail.com Cloud and tap Add.

Use folders to organize your cloud photos

Whichever method you use to upload photos to the cloud, you can keep things organized by creating folders. Just go to the Cloud tab, click Create folder in the top navigation bar. A popup window will appear; type in a folder name and press the Create folder button to save. Once the folder is created, you can drag and drop photos into it – or select the photo, click Move, select the folder you wish to place it in, and click Paste.

You can also share entire folders with trusted contacts – so you can upload all your photos from a holiday party, create a share link, and send it via email, text, or social media link. – keep reading to learn how.
Pro tip: If your Cloud has filled up with photos and you would like to quickly locate a specific picture, try the search function. Find out How to find files in the Cloud – and search by photo location

Sharing your photos from the cloud

Just like Dropbox or other cloud-based file-sharing services, the mail.com Cloud lets you create a link for trusted recipients to view or download your photos, which are often too large to send as regular email attachments.

Once you have uploaded your photos to the mail.com Cloud, select a photo or folder and click Share to create a guest link, which will appear in a popup window. You can either copy the link and paste it manually into an email or text message for your recipient, or click Send a link via email to automatically create an email containing your link. If you would like to set a password for opening the link, first click Share configuration to set the password, which you can then share separately with your recipient.
Bonus explainer: If you’d like detailed instructions on sharing photos, see our deep dive: Cloud file sharing: How to send share links with mail.com

Before you get started uploading photos to the cloud, please leave us some feedback below!

This article first appeared on December 19, 2021, and was updated on February 29, 2024.

Images: 1&1/Shutterstock

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