Mitigating cloud risks with secure file sharing

May 20, 2014

2014-05-20 Risk Button.jpgThe art of file sharing has gone beyond ensuring that paper copies are in the right place to determining the best digital solution that will meet user needs. Without direction from IT staff, many employees turn to their personal accounts to exchange and work on important company files. However, this practice can introduce significant risks to the safety of mission-critical documents and complicate protection strategies. Organizations must recognize that cloud-based file sharing solutions are not disappearing anytime soon and will need to be integrated accordingly for business productivity.

Many businesses are stepping up to the challenge of using file management systems within their everyday tasks, but there are several things to consider before choosing a solution. TechTarget contributor John Treadway noted that in order to have a private infrastructure that has the same functionality as popular public offerings, the company will need to enforce organizational change, test the environment and invest a considerable amount of capital in it. While the service will meet user needs, it is a substantially resource-intensive process that many SMBs may not be able to take on. Instead of building the cloud environment from the ground up, a provider will be able to establish a system that has tools the business requires to operate effectively. With online file storage solutions such as Memeo C1, the organization will have similar capabilities as a custom cloud deployment without all of the hassle.

“Few IT organizations have the resources, budget, skills or political will to be successful,” Treadway wrote. “That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have some form of private cloud as part of your IT portfolio. But it does mean that you should be careful of your ambitions to build and operate it yourself.”

Handling the file sharing risk in the cloud
As a relatively new technology, the cloud still has a lot to prove, especially with security needs on the rise. Vendors have to provide a solution that will not compromise data safety or compliance regulations. According to eSecurity Planet contributor Jieming Zhu, rather than trying to eradicate the cloud services altogether, by reinventing the infrastructure, establishing policies and enforcing protection measures, the IT team can mitigate threats and ensure that employees can use their file transfer systems effectively. Memeo C1, for example, enables mobile access control and remote wipe capabilities to prevent unauthorized users from viewing sensitive documents. This ensures that IT has more oversight into the location of data and has more governance over its use.

“Just as IT professionals have reacted following every major computing inflection point since the mainframe was invented (minicomputers, client/server, PCs, the Internet, laptops), the answer is reinvention,” Zhu wrote. “IT must transition from being an infrastructure provider/manager to being a policy and audit strategist.”

Category: Data Security