MEGA.nz Review (Generous 20GB Encrypted Cloud Storage For Free)

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If you're looking for a high-capacity cloud storage provider with strong built-in encryption-in, then MEGA.nz is a cloud service provider worthy of serious consideration. So let's take a closer look at its cloud service in this MEGA.nz review.

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MEGA Review Summary (TL;DR)
Rating
Rated 4.7 out of 5
Price from
From €4.99 per month
Cloud Storage
400 GB – 16 TB (20 GB of free storage)
Jurisdiction
Europe & New Zealand
Encryption
AES-128 encryption. Two-factor authentication
E2EE
End-to-end encryption (E2EE)
Customer Support
Email & community forum support
Refund Policy
30-day money-back guarantee
Supported Platforms
Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android
Features
Generous free plan. End-to-end encryption. GDPR compliant. MEGAdrop, MEGAbird & MEGAcmd
Current Deal
Get up to 16% OFF MEGA Pro plans

The importance of the cloud in our modern data-driven world cannot be overstated. Cloud storage solutions across a number of different platforms and devices give you the freedom to work and collaborate remotely in an increasingly expanding and challenging world.

But a number of questions remain about the viability of cloud storage, not least in the area of data security. This is where MEGA cloud storage comes in. Hailing from Auckland, New Zealand, MEGA.nz provides limitless encrypted storage for business and personal use alike.

Pros and Cons

MEGA.nz Pros

  • 400 GB Pro plan starts at From €4.99 per month (prices are in Euros, gets converted to your local currency)
  • 20 GB free cloud storage
  • Strong security features like zero-knowledge end-to-end encryption + 2FA
  • Encrypted links for easy sharing
  • Fast transfer large file uploads
  • Previewing of media & document files
  • Encrypted audio & video chat (MEGAchat)
  • Automated synchronisation betwen desktop and cloud
  • Automatically backup photos and videos
  • Apps for desktop, mobile + browser extensions, CMD and NAS support

MEGA.nz Cons

  • Collaboration is limited by security protocols
  • No phone or live chat support
  • No third-party published audits
DEAL

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From €4.99 per month

MEGA Cloud Storage Features

MEGA’s unflinching commitment to protecting users and their data with end-to-encryption has served as a beacon to those with privacy concerns, and the vulnerability of data in the face of intrusive companies and governments.

But security is only one aspect of cloud storage. Let's start by looking at MEGA’s user interface and all-around usability credentials. The very things its competitors Google Drive and Dropbox pride themselves on. 

mega nz dashboard

Ease of Use

User-friendliness is a pretty vital characteristic of any cloud service. Fortunately, MEGA.nz doesn't disappoint in this department. Let's break down why this is the case.

Getting Started

Signing up for a MEGA account couldn't be easier: enter your email address, decide on a password, and then click on the email verification link. It's that simple.

To get you up and running, MEGA.nz introduces itself to you through a handy pop-up tutorial. The purpose of which is to guide you through some of its more rudimentary features, as well as provide instructions on how to navigate the interface.

Accessibility

As you will discover, MEGA.nz can be accessed in a number of different ways, including via desktop app, mobile apps and browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox, and Edge. 

There are even command-line interfaces (CMD) that are compatible with Windows, macOS and Linux operating systems, for those comfortable with terminal prompts. 

More on these individual platforms later.

Bear in mind to get the best functionality from your desktop browser account you will need to download the MEGA Desktop App.

Interface 

In terms of UI, MEGA’s clean modern interface is a joy to use. The layout of tools and features is uncluttered and clear. Everything is where you would expect to find it. Navigation is a breeze.

Thanks to this minimalistic design, the eye is easily led to the important principle features: Cloud Drive, Shared Folders, Links, etc.

Storage options are pretty well signposted too. Making the important business of uploading files and folders a straightforward task.

In fact, there doesn't seem to be any fiddling about with menus and submenus at all, which enhances MEGA’s overall user experience.

mega nz account recovery key

Password management

Access to your MEGA account is entirely dependent on the password of your creation. Under the zero-knowledge terms of your account, MEGA does not hold or store knowledge of this password. So good password management is essential.

Mega’s ended-to-end encryption system relies on unique recovery keys that are generated locally for each user. Your recovery key is created automatically when you open a MEGA account.

In the event you do lose or forget your password, this recovery key provides the only means by which to reset your password. 

It is your responsibility to store this key safely. Without it, you run the risk of losing access to your MEGA account.

mega nz security

Security

As already mentioned, security is foremost on MEGA’s list of priorities. By incorporating zero-knowledge user-controlled end-to-end encryption (E2EE) technology, MEGA.nz can better deliver on that promise.

But what is end-to-end encryption exactly?

Zero Knowledge Encryption

End-to-end encryption means that only a sender and authorized recipient or recipients are able to decrypt shared or transmitted messages and files. 

MEGA’s zero-knowledge user-controlled end-to-end encryption key goes a little further in that all the data stored on MEGA’s servers is encrypted with a “key” derived from your password.

This means that not even MEGA has access to your password or your data. Never mind any third parties. The idea is that your information will remain just that – yours.

Of course, this increases the importance of a strong well-protected password to prevent your data from being hacked and enjoying full-spectrum protection. 

Two-Factor Authentication

And it doesn't end there. To further boost security across all your devices, MEGA incorporates two-factor authentication

This extra layer of protection comes in the form of a TOTP shared secret method. This means that as well as your “traditional”, “static” password you will need a Time-based One-time Password too.

This significantly reduces the likelihood of fraudulent access and helps ensure the safe storage of your data.

Anti-Ransomware

Cloud storage is not immune to ransomware attacks. The engineers at MEGA have clearly given this some thought and introduced file versioning and recovery features.

This means that in case of infection you can revert back to earlier versions of a file, even if you are automatically synchronizing your local storage with Mega cloud.

mega nz shared folders
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File Sharing

Large file sharing is one of MEGA’s key strengths

When uploading or downloading files or folders, the file transfer center indicates progress, as well as lets you manage scheduled file transfers.

That said, the traditional way of sending emails to colleagues or clients you wish to share a file or folder with is not the most efficient method – not least because it requires the recipient to have a MEGA.nz account.

Although this method is supported by MEGA, it also incorporates a much more efficient and safer way of file sharing – namely, Links.

mega file and link sharing

Link Permissions

Link permissions are an innovative way of simplifying the sharing of data without compromising security. 

MEGA allows you to create a link to any desired folder or file and protect it with a password.

This way you can remove access to data at any time by simply deleting the link. And if that’s not quite secure enough for you, you can share the decryption key via a separate channel to the link – thereby further reducing the possibility of any unauthorized access.

It’s worth noting that there is no limit to the file sizes you can share with MEGA. Again simply set up a link from your computer or mobile device and safely share.

There's even the option with the Pro and Business versions of Mega to make the link available only for a limited time – a built-in expiry date.

Frictionless Sharing

MEGA cloud storage does not require the recipient of shared files to be a MEGA client. This means that colleagues and customers can download shared files without the need to sign up for a MEGA account.

This is an important point in boosting engagement and collaboration, both professionally and socially.

file sharing

Collaboration

The benefits of working under one “virtual roof” are numerous in terms of team collaboration. But a cloud storage service that prioritizes security above all else is not always going to offer the most collaborative approach to data storage.

A security-first ethos incorporating end-to-end encryption would be compromised by the integration of third-party productivity or email apps. After all, what about the integrity of the links in your security chain?

That said, MEGA does have some pretty handy collaboration capabilities hardwired in. 

Team Management and Growth

The first of which is the option of allowing contacts to be able to access specific or even all of the folders in your account.

This feature significantly streamlines the creation of a wider group of collaborators, with whom you can share files, as well as chat and make calls, that much more easily. They don’t even need to have a MEGA account.

It goes without saying that the same user-controlled end-to-end encryption applies across the board.

MEGAdrop

In a further effort to boost collaboration with people outside your MEGA network, MEGA.nz has incorporated something called MEGAdrop

MEGAdrop allows anyone to upload files to your MEGA cloud, again regardless of whether they have an account or not.

This kind of public upload folder means customers or suppliers can send you files securely without the added chore of having to sign up to MEGA.

Conversations and Conferencing

MEGA delivers its trademark degree of privacy and security even when communicating through a browser or mobile app.

It does this by ensuring that only authorized people can access your data. This user-controlled end-to-end encryption applies to all your chat, audio, and video calls. 

It appears that though not the best in its class, MEGA has enough collaboration features to keep you working remotely – wherever you happen to be.

DEAL

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From €4.99 per month

File Storage Space – MEGA By Name, MEGA By Nature

But how does Mega do in the storage department, you might ask?

Well, really quite well it seems.

The amount of data you can store on MEGA depends on your pricing plan. The free package gives you a very generous 20 GB of storage right off the bat. While the paid PRO III version boasts a whopping 16 TB storage and 16 TB transfer. So there's plenty of scope for scaling up.

To give you a comparison of how this compares with the competition. The unpaid versions of Box.com and Dropbox offer 5 GB and 2 GB respectively.

cloud storage settings

Supported Platforms

Let's now turn our attention to MEGA’s various platforms and the additional functionality that they offer.

MEGA Desktop App

To get the very best in fast synchronization between your computer and MEGA’s cloud service, you will need to download and install the MEGA Desktop App.

Once the “sync” feature is turned on you can access your data safely across different locations and devices, secure in the knowledge that it’s always on and working in the background.

MEGA.nz also offers one or two options in how these background processes are configured.

For example, you have the option to synchronize your entire MEGA cloud to one local folder or set up multiple syncs. You can even disqualify certain file types. Combine this kind of “selective” syncing with “shares” and you can allocate and conduct workflows in a highly configurable way.

Other MEGA Desktop App innovations include the facility to stream directly from any file in your MEGA cloud repository, as well as a “deleted data detention” feature, which tidies away deleted files to a specific folder. 

Not only does this remove unnecessary clutter from your desktop but also gives you the option of restoring deleted files if you subsequently change your mind.

The management of the Desktop App’s syncing, file upload/download, and file versioning functionality is handled by MEGA’s File Manager. While MEGA’s Transfer Manager gives you full control of active and completed transfers, with options to prioritize, pause/resume, open, and generate links.

The MEGA Desktop App integrates with your browser to cleverly compensate for browser limitations when it comes to large files. This kind of hybrid approach significantly improves reliability and transfer speeds.

The MEGA Desktop App is compatible with Windows, macOS, and Linux operating systems and has cross-platform functionality.

MEGA Mobile Apps

Of course, not everything is done from a desktop these days. The demand for mobile integration across a number of devices has risen exponentially.

Secure data on the move is where MEGA Mobile Apps come in.

MEGA gives you unfettered access to all your data at all times, allowing you to view and share files even if they were not originally uploaded from your mobile device.

Other features engineered specifically for the demands of a mobile-first culture include secure automatic camera uploads – to back up and share photos and videos – as well as mobile decryption for safe streaming on phones and tablets.

The MEGA Mobile Apps platform also allows you to save files stored in the cloud to your mobile device locally, so that you can access them without an internet connection.

Of course, the same end-to-end encryption applies to everything transmitted and stored through MEGA Mobile Apps.

MEGA Mobile Apps Continued – MEGAchat

Chatting with friends, colleagues, and collaborators plays a large part in mobile communications. But can the same stringent privacy and security measures apply to such inherently less secure channels?

This is where MEGAchat comes in.

MEGAchat provides text, voice, and video chat with the same full end-to-end encryption you receive with all your other MEGA platforms.

This means all your private communications remain just that – private. Leaving you to collaborate securely by text, voice, photo, and video message with individuals and groups alike. 

And if there are any lingering doubts about the authenticity of a contact, MEGAchat incorporates a cryptographic fingerprint verification system – to quickly dispel any such thoughts.

Limitless Sharing Within a Chat

Moreover, you can continue to share text, audio and visual files directly within a chat, straight from your MEGA account or from your device storage.

The beauty of MEGAchat is that it does not limit conversations to a user’s phone number or a single device. This means you use an email to chat and call across multiple devices – unlike its competitors.

You can even add contacts through scanning a QR code or SMS verification.

Very impressive indeed.

Browser Extensions

Let's look at the prickly subject of browser extensions. The performance on browsers, particularly when handling large transfers and downloads, can be sluggish at the best of times. The problem is latency.

MEGA’s Browser Extensions platform can significantly improve matters. 

Available for Chrome, Firefox and Edge, MEGA’s source code files are loaded from the extension itself rather than MEGA’s servers. This means that the JavaScript, HTML, and CSS files run directly from your machine and do not require any additional integrity verification – resulting in reduced download times.

To ensure security protocols, browser extension updates are cryptographically protected.

Another benefit of using MEGA Browser Extensions is that it keeps track of your password, so you won’t need it every time you access your account.

MEGAcmd

And for those of you who like to work inside the shell and are comfortable using command line prompts, MEGA gives you the option to configure better management, synchronization, integration, and automation through its MEGAcmd platform.

MEGAcmd facilitates the configuration of an FTP (file transfer protocol) server and will let you access, browse, edit, copy, delete, and backup your MEGA files as if they were located on your own computer. 

It is worth noting that the “as if” part is critical here, because the decryption and encryption processes will decrease the throughput, slowing things down slightly.

As well as facilitating the synchronization and backup of local folders, MEGAcmd also enables access to a WebDAV/streaming server.

MEGA on NAS

Still in the realms of the terminal. The MEGA on NAS platform is another command-line tool, this time designed to interact with MEGA from your Network Attached Storage device.

Once configured, you can automatically synchronize data and transfers between NAS and MEGA, as well as schedule periodic backups of a local folder on your NAS device.

As you would expect by now from MEGA, all data is end-to-end encrypted with keys that only the user controls.

Public Source Code

So that’s performance and functionality across all “platforms” taken care of. But how transparent is MEGA, you might ask? Well, a good deal it seems. 

MEGA.nz makes a strong commitment to transparency by publishing all its source code on Github. MEGA’s security whitepaper is also available for general scrutiny.

The importance of public source is that it enables independent verification of their cryptographic model.

MEGA.nz complies fully with General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the European Union’s personal data privacy regulations and is governed by this policy everywhere in the world, not just in the European Union

Data Location

Another important point in data security is the question of where the data is kept.

All account metadata is stored in secure facilities in Europe. User-encrypted data is held in secure facilities in Europe or in other locations that have been approved by the European Commission as having an adequate level of data protection, such as New Zealand and Canada

MEGA does not store any of its user data in the United States (unlike Dropbox, Google Drive, and Microsoft OneDrive).

mega support

Support

Let’s round things up with the not insignificant matter of support.

Despite a dedicated help center packed with FAQs and a series of specific contact email addresses, MEGA does not have a Live Chat support option.

This is a significant disadvantage in our always-on digital culture and a major letdown for the customer who expects around-the-clock support.

No customer live chat support is a major letdown, and MEGA should address this deficiency.

Pricing Plans

So finally the bottom line. How much does Mega cost?

Users can sign up for a free version of MEGA, without entering any credit card details. This free plan gives 20 GB of storage and is forever permanent.

Extra space of up to 50 GB can be earned by completing various tasks, such as inviting friends or installing mobile apps, but this extra space is only temporary.

The paid plans range From €4.99 per month to a pricey 29.99 euros for the top of the range Pro III version, for those who require all the bells and whistles.

The prices listed below are monthly amounts. Charges are in Euros for all transactions but converted to customers' local currency.

It is worth noting that an annual subscription is 16 percent cheaper than 12 monthly payments.

PlanPriceStorageTransfer/Bandwidth
MEGA Free PlanFREE20GBNot specified
MEGA Individual Plans
Pro LiteFrom €4.99 per month400GB1TB
Pro IFrom €9.99 per month2TB2TB
Pro IIFrom €19.99 per month8TB8TB
Pro IIIFrom €29.99 per month16TB16TB
MEGA Business Plan €15/mo incl. 3 users (extra €5 per new user)3TB (extra €2.50 per TB)3TB (extra €2.50 per TB)
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From Alleged Piracy to Absolute Privacy – A Little Backstory

Founded in 2013, New Zealand-operated MEGA.nz was born out of the ashes of the notorious Megaupload, a Hong Kong-based file-hosting company whose servers and businesses were seized by the US Department of Justice in 2012.

Megaupload and its owner, German-Finnish Internet entrepreneur Kim Dotcom, were charged with numerous counts of data infringement and encouraging internet piracy. Charges which he strenuously denied.

But you know what they say? There’s no such thing as bad publicity.

Because, in spite of this somewhat chequered past, MEGA’s rise in the world of cloud storage has been impressive. Registering 100,000 users in its first hour, it has rapidly become one of the world’s most popular cloud storage services.

FAQ

Is MEGA.nz safe?

Yes, MEGA’s zero-knowledge end-to-end encryption means that only you and authorized recipients are able to decrypt shared folders, files, and messages. This means that not even MEGA has access to your password or data, let alone any third parties. The idea is that your information will remain just that – yours. Two-Factor Authentication (2FA), password-secured links and anti-ransomware features further bolster already very good security credentials.

Is MEGA.nz really free?

Yes, MEGA has a free plan that has many of the features of the paid plans and comes with a generous 20 GB of storage to boot. There are no strings attached, i.e. you can use the free account forever. Paid for pro plan versions with additional functionality and storage space cost more.

Is MEGA.nz legal?

Yes, despite its links to the notorious, Hong Kong-based file-hosting company, Megaupload, MEGA is an entirely legitimate organization. Mega has over 200 million registered users in more than 200 countries and territories, with the number of stored files exceeding 87 billion. Moreover MEGA publishes regular transparency reports.

Is MEGA better than Dropbox?

I think so but the answer to that question depends on your needs. If it's security and privacy of data that you're looking for then MEGA is the clear winner. It also outperforms Dropbox in the amount of free storage offered. However, if collaboration through integration with other tools and applications is a priority for you, then Dropbox might better suit your needs.

Is MEGA.nz better than Google Drive?

I think so, because, with end-to-end zero-knowledge encryption, MEGA beats Google Drive for security and privacy hands down. Not to mention the small matter of 20 GB of free storage space compared to Google’s 15 GB. So if security and storage space are the qualities that you seek in a cloud storage service, then MEGA is for you. That said, Google Drive comes with a host of tools and integrations, and partly because of its lower security threshold, it also probably offers better collaboration options. 

What is MEGA Cloud/Drop/Bird/CMD?

MEGAcloud is the name for Mega's cloud storage platform. MEGAdrop lets anybody with the link upload files to your MEGA cloud, even if they don't have an account. MEGAbird is the Firefox email client extension to use for Thunderbird to send large encrypted files. MEGAcmd is the command-line application for Mac, Windows, or Linux for users to navigate their MEGA account as if it were a local folder and use the advanced features via a command-line interface.

Mega Review for 2022 – Summary

MEGA is a very appealing proposition. It's a feature-rich, security, and privacy-conscious, behemoth of a cloud storage service that boasts an easy-to-use interface and a pretty impressive free version to get you started.

This broad appeal and functionality combined with a free version that gives you 20 GB of storage space right off the bat make MEGA.nz a difficult offer to refuse.

DEAL

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User Reviews

Love MEGA NZ

Rated 4 out of 5
May 8, 2022

I know that Mega.nz is only slow because of its security features, but I don't like to trade off my time to secure some basic work files. The UI also looks a bit immature and doesn't look very professional if you want to share files with your clients or anyone outside your company. I might switch to OneDrive soon. Other than that, it's really cheap and syncs your files on all your devices.

Avatar for Darja
Darja

best cloud storage

Rated 5 out of 5
April 1, 2022

This is the best cloud storage provider in terms of security and privacy. All your files get encrypted using your password, which means no one can open them without knowing your password. It also means that you need to wait a couple of seconds for your account and files to get decrypted for your own personal viewing.

Avatar for Jessica
Jessica

MEGA

Rated 5 out of 5
March 5, 2022

I was going to quit using Mega.nz when I heard how it's used for sharing pirated files. But after doing some research I found that Mega is used for piracy because of their encryption technology. Hackers or even law enforcement cannot access your files if you store them on Mega without your password or unless you willingly share it with them.

Avatar for Florian
Florian

I am so glad I found Mega NZ free cloud storage

Rated 4 out of 5
November 12, 2021

I am so glad I found Mega NZ free cloud storage. The service is fast and easy to use. It does not take up much space on my phone and it is secure. I like that I can access my files from any device. What I like most is that my data is safe and secure, but accessible. What I DON'T like is the lack of support

Avatar for Johnny E
Johnny E

20GB FREE!

Rated 5 out of 5
November 2, 2021

I have been using MEGA for a few months now and I am so happy I found it. It is a secure way to store all of my data on the cloud and I never have to worry about losing my information again. My favorite thing about MEGA is that it is free and does not require any personal information, which makes it easy to use.

Avatar for Lenny in SF
Lenny in SF

It's mega encrypted!

Rated 5 out of 5
October 29, 2021

I use MEGA encrypted cloud storage to store all of my files. I can access them from any device and I can share files with other people while keeping them secure. I have a lot of sensitive information on my computer and it's nice to know that it's safe from prying eyes.

Avatar for Dave
Dave

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mega.nz review

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