Free Cloud Storage
Cloud Storage - It can be a costly and emotional experience if you lose precious holiday snaps, important files and work. To make things easier and for peace of mind, use a free online storage service to back everything up.
Google Drive
Google Drive - If you have a Google account (eg, if you're a Gmail user), you can use Google Drive to store and access files wherever you are. Google accounts are free to create.

What you get for free: 15GB of free storage. This allowance is spread across three Google services: Google Drive, Gmail and Google Photos (for high-res photos – Google Photos gives free unlimited storage for photos of 16 megapixels or less).

Accessed via: Your browser, iOS, Android, Blackberry and Windows programs.

Box Although more geared towards businesses, Box does offer personal plans too. As with Dropbox, you can install the desktop app for syncing between your hard drive and the cloud.

What you get for free: 10GB with an individual file size limit of 250MB.

Accessed via: iOS, Android, Windows Phone and Blackberry apps, OS X and Windows programs. Box for Office also lets you access and edit your files from within Office programs.

OneDrive Popular with MSE's tech team, OneDrive (previously SkyDrive) is Microsoft's free online storage offering. You need to have a Hotmail or Live mail account, but as these email services are free, it's worth setting one up just for the free storage.

What you get for free: 5GB. Students get 1TB of storage free.

Accessed via: iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Blackberry, OS X and Windows.

iCloud If you're an iPhone or iPad user, you most likely use Apple iCloud to backup at least some of your data. It's well integrated into iOS – though also runs on Mac and now Windows – and automatically updates and stores your files across all connected devices.

What you get for free: The free version comes with 5GB of storage which you can use to backup photos, videos, mail, notes, calendars, app data, contacts and documents. If you're storing images or videos though you'll quickly run out of space, in which case we'd recommend one of the free photo storage services below.

Accessed via: Integrated into iOS and OS X; Windows.

Amazon Drive
Amazon Drive Following in the footsteps of Google and Microsoft, online shopping giant Amazon runs a cloud-based storage service called, straightforwardly enough, Amazon Drive.

What you get for free: All Amazon Prime customers get 5GB of free storage for videos, music and documents, as well as free unlimited storage for their photos. It's not worth forking out the £79 a year just for this, but if you're already a member, it's a bonus.

Accessed via: For all files – iOS, Android, OS X and Windows. For photo backup – iOS and Android.

BT Cloud
BT Cloud All BT broadband customers – standard or Infinity – get some storage space with BT Cloud. Given that BT captures around a third of the UK's broadband market, that's a lot of customers with free storage to take advantage of (and many not know about it).

What you get for free: You get either 5GB, 100GB or 500GB depending on your broadband package. To find out your allowance, log into My BT and click on the BT Cloud button under My Extras.

Accessed via: For all files – iOS, Android, OS X and Windows. For photo backup – iOS and Android.

DropBox Launched back in 2008, Dropbox is one of the biggest names in online storage. The easiest way to use it is by installing it on your machine/device, which allows for automatic backups via its mobile apps or (of folders) on desktop.

What you get for free: With Dropbox Basic account you get 2GB free, though this can be boosted by referring others to Dropbox. For every person who signs up via your referral link, you'll both get an extra 500MB, up to a maximum of 16GB.

Accessed via: iOS, Android, Windows Phone, OS X and Windows. Full details on how to set up BT Cloud, or see BT Cloud FAQs.