November 9, 2018
7 strategic guidelines for an effective EFSS solution
Over time, Enterprise File Sync and Share (EFSS) solutions have developed into dominant platforms. These solutions help to drive business operations and innovation to the next level.
Nowadays, the words cloud, Dropbox and OneDrive, are synonymous terms within our daily vernacular. Yet, it’s important to note that these platforms are not always a great combination for your business. Why? Simply put, today businesses need a more secure, modern experience to bring about strong digital transformation.
Staying in the past is a bad idea for a business that still utilizes these platforms, “security issues or regulatory requirements” must be a real concern. It’s important to note that having certain criteria in place for a modern EFSS solution, what Gartner now calls “CCP,” is necessary to make an educated decision for a modern digital workplace.
Seven criteria for a modern CCP solution
1. User Experience
Let’s start with the basics! Design is the key to a great user experience. It must be undetectable for a smooth CCP solution. Deficient design factors slow down work progress and impede the bottom line. You will always run into hassles when your workers don’t have quick access to a reliable solution. Workers tend to veer off course and fall back on handy crutches such as the cloud, etc. These days, organizations still require remote workers to access documents through a VPN—bad idea! If you want to be fully protected, it’s important that they access files through an app that lets them stream and share content without having to log on, download or e-mail files.
These implementations promote a modern way to deliver a secure digital transformation experience.
The General Data Privacy Regulation (GDPR) is causing many businesses headaches because of the confusion around the new laws. You can spend all day trying to figure out the maze.
Bottom-line takeaway: “Companies based outside the EU must comply if they do business with even one business or individual inside the EU. Penalties are steep if not followed.”
To avoid these penalties, businesses need “data sovereignty.” This is the “idea that content is subject to governance according to the law of where it is stored.”
The good news is that Axway’s Syncplicity[JM2] supports data sovereignty. The Syncplicity solution provides “built-in location control that gives customers the choice of where their data is stored.” This helps with governance controls. Note that “zero content knowledge is a mandatory requirement for a GDPR-compliant CCP solution.” This simply means that a vendor “encrypts customers’ files so they can be read ONLY by the customer.”
To meet GDPR requirements, companies must have a solution in place that supports which data can be accessed and shared—end of story. Many EU-based companies usually have their data on site. This allows them to keep private data within the EU.
Ransomware is no joke! Back in the day, ransomware was an easy way for small-time crooks to steal information. They have now become savvier (sadly) and are now a serious threat to organizations that are not protected. Ransomware doesn’t take your data. They go one step further and they encrypt it. This means the owner cannot use it. This is a disaster all around if you’re not protected.
A company-wide CCP solution helps to get rid of ransomware threats. Note, no option can stop ransomware all together, but it helps to make the attack irrelevant and mitigate the loss for your company. “Syncplicity aids in ransomware mitigation across industries.”
With a CCP solution in place, you can replicate and restore files back to where they started in the first place. This solution supports quicker retrieval times, as well as reducing costs and lost income.
4. Cloud vendor lock-in
What is a cloud vendor lock-in? This happens when “a company that has moved part of its business to the cloud and now they can’t move out because migration will be too painful.”
A company should only consider CCP solutions that are “decoupled from storage choice.” A good example is the GDPR. Companies that used US data centers are now required to have their data stored in the region that they are based.
5. External sharing
External sharing is a big concern if you’re not protected at the highest level. Compliance and security certainly are important factors, but they are not the only ones for a better solution. Usability must be well-maintained for users on both sides of the coin. Companies that share files with other partners need to look for four features to be protected:
• Security and user-friendly external sharing capabilities
• Zero costs for external sharing
• Control levels of trust
• Rights management and DLP controls that prevent content from being shared accidentally
This helps to enable a much smoother CCP solution.
6. Machine collaboration
It’s a fact of life that automation is here to stay. Just go to the corner pharmacy and you end up checking and paying for your own items. Gone are the days of a human doing the work for you in most cases. Companies need to be able to work with automated apps to compete. This is simply a fact of life. This requires a CCP solution that works—and works well.
A company can only work efficiently when automation works in tandem with content collaboration. Syncplicity has improved “operation efficiency, as well as the customer experience, improved utilization, being mobile within existing systems, external sharing which is added to the existing systems, cloud-based distribution capabilities added to existing systems.” All these points help to bring about a smooth CCP solution.
7. Customer success
To have smooth customer success, you need to have the users and IT teams on board. The IT teams will need help understanding the CCP solutions features and what their full agenda is for a smooth transition. At that time, the system is ready for deployment and configuration.
Thanks to Syncplicity, IT-readiness is available to set up security and administrative controls. Further, Syncplicity drives adoption by delivering guidance and support.
The result is you need user adoption for a positive outcome. To have a real digital transformation all around, companies with regulatory, security and supply chain concerns require a CCP solution that works from the ground up.
Be sure to choose a solution that is designed to leverage technology and not hinder it. These are the ideal foundational steps that you need to have in place to bring about a smooth transition.
Read our White Pape rto learn more about the CCP solution.
November 5, 2018 | by Kristie Conner
Secure File Sharing & Content Collaboration for Users, IT and Security
In the recent research study conducted by Ponemon Institute, Ponemon surveyed over a thousand IT and security practitioners in North America, United Kingdom, Germany and France with the purpose of understanding file sharing and content collaboration practices in organizations and what practices they were taking and should be taking to secure data without impeding the flow of information. This has turned into the research report “Secure File Sharing & Content Collaboration for Users, IT and Security” which is a look into how 1,371 IT and Security leaders balancing the needs of users, security and managing unstructured data to meet corporate objectives.
While organizations feel that having a solution for accessing and sharing files securely, what is known in the market as content collaboration platforms, is essential for employee productivity, it was also clear that there are still concerns related to security. What was interesting is that the need for strict security is challenging digital transformation.
Seventy percent of respondents feel that digital transformation is being challenged by the need for strict security safeguards to protect the sharing and the use of data that is sensitive and critical, with 60% seeing the inability to enable free flowing and sharing of information a barrier to achieving digital transformation.
There were four key themes that emerged from the research:
- Risks in the file sharing and collaboration environment
- Governance practices and technologies used to secure sensitive data
- Features that improve the file sharing and collaboration environment
- Achieving secure file sharing & content collaboration
The risks with file sharing and collaboration
According to the research 44% of employees use file sharing and content collaborationsolutions to store, edit and share content in the normal course of business. And, 63 percent of participants in this research believe it is likely that their companies had a data breach in the last two years because of insecure file sharing and content collaboration, combined with the fact only 39% percent of respondents rate their ability to keep sensitive content secure in the file sharing and collaboration environment as high.
What is at the root of the risks? One area that was identified is the amount of unstructured data within organizations. “The plethora of unstructured data makes managing the threats to sensitive information difficult,” says Dr. Larry Ponemon. On average, 53% percent of organizations’ sensitive data is unstructured and on average based on the research results companies have 3 PB of unstructured data.
To compound the situation unstructured data is stored in multiple repositories, the most persistent is email with 23.4%, followed by data stored in shared network drives and now there is the addition of cloud-based file sharing services like Box and Dropbox. Having unstructured data distributed across the enterprise in various silos makes it challenging for organizations to not only have visibility and control, but to ensure policies are in place across all channels ensuring governance.
The data from the survey aligns to what we’ve been seeing for the last several years at Syncplicity. Organizations are struggling to manage the increasing amounts of unstructured data across different silos – as highlighted by the research and providing a way to manage and secure all the unstructured data while giving end-users easy, seamless access. Our most public success of around this is Siemens and their innovative approach to modernizing their infrastructure to power a digital workplace – that is secure and provides users with easy access to enterprise files.
Governance Practices and technologies used to secure sensitive content
The report highlights that respondents are aware of the threats to their sensitive information but admit their governance practices and technologies should be more effective. One way to keep their sensitive content safe is classifying the level of security by various attributes such as data usage; 62% of respondents highlighted data usage followed by location of users.
One way identified by the research for securing sensitive content is controlling access and training users, however, only 42% control access and only 33% of responders train users. There is a lot of opportunity here for companies to improve governance practices by using technologies like granular group-based policies for easily establishing rules for access and sharing, while also training users on best practices and how to use the technologies, with 44% of respondents are going to invest in more user training, while a step in the right direction, training users might be one of the best ways to protect a company’s assets.
One of the benefits we offer our customers is our global Customer Success Team, who can help your organization train users on how to use Syncplicity for securely sharing files and folders – how to leverage password protection and other tools that empower your users to be secure corporate citizens.
Features that improve security around file sharing and collaboration
While security is obviously a top priority, the respondents still want flexibility for their users. Which is a positive because if users enjoy their corporate solution – it makes it a lot easier to convince them to use it. A few features that these IT and security leaders identified as important, 70% agreed that the ability to securely collaborate with colleagues both inside and outside the organization and 65% cited the ability to recover previous versions files immediately.
When it comes to providing control and security, Syncplicity offers organizations options based on their unique objectives. But, one thing that sets us apart in the market is the hybrid-cloud, we give organizations the ability to keep files on-premises for maximum control, while keeping other files sensitive or not in the cloud – the real critical piece is that where the files sit does not matter to the user, they always have one simple, single way to access folder and files.
In summary, what we have learned from the research is that an effective file sharing and content collaboration platform is a balance between security and user convenience. Please join us on November 7th to get more insight from Dr. Larry Ponemon on the findings from the research report.
Register for the webinar in Europe: Click Here
Register for the webinar in the US: Click here