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Cloud-based Storage Can Help Your Work

Duke Box storage offers secure options to access and share content 

Electrical and computer engineering professor Krishnendu Chakrabarty manages five grants, totaling $500,000.

As part of his work, he monitors the balance on each grant to ensure projects are on track and staff members have adequate funding. In the past, the only way to get this information was to log into Duke’s financial software and conduct several data searches.

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Now as a result of a project led by Duke’s Administrative Systems Management team, he accesses reports and grant updates, along with other grant managers, using Box. Box is Duke’s cloud-based storage and collaboration service that allows users to access and share content securely with Duke and non-Duke users – anywhere, anytime, on any device with an internet connection.

“It’s very simple. It’s automated, and I get a Box link to a report once a month," Chakrabarty said. “Because I travel a lot, trying to be on campus is always very difficult. It is much simpler when I can access it from China or Europe.”

Box, which is managed by the Office of Information Technology (OIT), is available at no charge to Duke staff, faculty and students with a NetID and password. Here’s how some Box features can make your work easier:


Duke’s Box provides 50 gigabytes (GB) of cloud storage,. By comparison Google provides 15GB shared between Google Drive, Google Photos and Gmail. Dropbox offers 2GB of free storage and Apple’s iCloud provides 5GB of free storage, both with the option to purchase more.

With Box, store large files up to 15GB each for photos and video. Box files are fully searchable to help you easily find what you need.


Unlike consumer alternatives,Duke’s Box is NetID protected, which means it is not publicly accessible or prone to security breeches. This makes Box a secure option for storing protected Duke data.

When vice provost for research Lawrence Carin was looking for a way to securely share grant data with principal investigators and grant managers, Box was the solution.

“We didn't want to send it via email because of sensitivity,” Carin said. “We needed to put it somewhere where it was accessible to faculty.”

Duke University Health System has implemented some additional guidelines to ensure that protected health information is secure in compliance with federal regulations.

Sharing and Collaborating

Content can be created in Box, uploaded or dragged and dropped into folders. It is easy to share documents and files without sending large attachments or multiple files by email.

Box users share files by cutting and pasting a link to the content and emailing it to anyone, even individuals outside Duke. Advanced features allow content owners to add passwords, set expiration dates or change the link name to remember more easily.

Box users may invite team collaborators to access individual files or whole folders. Owners can set permission settings allowing collaborators to upload, download or edit content. Box also allows collaborators to assign tasks and to track discussions through a centralized comments field.

Box Note

One of the easiest tools to use in Box is Box Note. This feature allows a user to create a simple text note and save it to the cloud in real-time. This is an excellent way to save and organize your meeting notes. Box Note automatically saves your work so you can write-and-go.