Secure file sharing impacted by rise of shadow IT

Oct 31, 2014

2014-10-31 Keyboard.jpgIn the modern business environment, there are more security risks than ever that can jeopardize the safety of essential company documents. With many employees using their personal devices and various accounts to view and work on sensitive files, the chances for a data breach or lost information are extraordinarily high. However, with organization-geared file sharing solutions, businesses can better protect their documents and ensure that employees have the flexibility to use their tools effectively. As threats become more sophisticated, it will be important to enforce the best security practices across devices and users.

While third parties can introduce substantial dangers to organization processes, employees can present just as much of a risk to sensitive information. Human error can have irrevocable consequences on the state of a business and cost essential data. According to a study by Osterman Research, 15 percent of employees have had their password or account breached, and 45 percent have used unsecure networks to work with sensitive data. These practices are indicative of the inadequate security practices that many workers follow when using their own hardware. To make matters worse, 10 percent of staff members don’t have any sort of authentication measure active for their device at all. This makes it significantly easier for individuals to access sensitive information on a stolen device and breach essential company systems.

“It is clear organizations need to continue to educate employees on the dangers and risks of mobile security but also look to solutions that safeguard the devices and applications which these employees have access to,” Osterman Research principal Michael Osterman stated.

The effect of shadow IT
Many organizations have attempted to provide their employees with solutions that fit their needs, however, many workers still choose to use their own programs. This has given rise to shadow IT, a problem that has become more challenging to control. ReadWrite contributor Matt Asay noted that the unauthorized use of software and devices is 10 times larger than known cloud usage, creating a disparity in IT’s regulation capabilities. In addition, a majority of employees are using unapproved cloud applications due in part to their familiarity and convenience. By delivering a mobile file sharing platform, decision-makers may be able to better govern sensitive information and protect users from advancing threats. The solution offers encryption capabilities along with remote wipe features to ensure that only authorized users can access the documents. In order to get staff to buy into this program, however, it must be easily navigable and offer substantial tools to improve their daily activities.

“CIOs that encourage developers to use open source and the cloud position themselves to assume control as soon as developers move onto the next business-changing application,” Asay wrote. “It may not be the kind of control they want, but it’s the reality of the modern enterprise.”

Category: Data Security