April 11, 2013
Dropbox for Business?
Given how many vendors call themselves “Dropbox for Business” it is no surprise that eventually Dropbox would declare that they are the Dropbox for Business.
Unfortunately, Dropbox does not have business, or enterprise in their DNA. While they may try to tack on business tools after the fact, IT administrators should ask themselves the following questions.
- Does it give you control and visibility over file sharing? Users want to share folders inside and outside the organization and will find a way to do it. Make sure your organization’s file sync and sharing solution allows IT to either restrict sharing (if that’s your policy) or allow it. And if you allow it, make sure your solution gives you the tools and reports to always know what has been shared, and with whom.
- Can you restrict where users access files? File sync and sharing solutions make it easy to access file anywhere. But sometimes, that’s too much. You may want to restrict file access to domain-attached devices and restrict use of public or home machines, or kiosks. You may also need to have different authentication requirements in different locations (for example, require 2-factor auth in some countries but not others). We call this “adaptive security”. Does your solution support that?
- Can you manage sharing at the group level? When new users join, do you expect your end users to re-share all their project folders with new users or do you want it automatic? And when a user leaves or changes teams, shouldn’t their folder access change automatically?
- Is your solution enterprise BYOD-friendly? Is data encrypted on your devices in transit and at rest on the mobile devices? Can you configure SSO on your mobile devices with 2-factor authentication? Can you add extra PIN codes? Can you remote wipe data, even if you don’t have a mobile device management (MDM) system in place, at the user-, device-, or folder- level? And if you have an MDM solution, does your sync and sharing solution work with it (stay tuned for some new announcements from us shortly!).
- Do you have the option to keep company files inside your own data center? Cloud storage is great, but most organizations have content that they might not want in the cloud. Can you file sync and sharing solution keep your files only in your data center and have them move directly from your storage to your devices? And, can you utilize the industries most scalable and easy-to-manage storage solutions?
- Do you get the enterprise-level reporting you need? Understanding usage at scale, and keeping tabs on all your files is critical. Can you monitor storage and create chargeback reports for different departments? Can you monitor bandwidth utilization? And, can you audit by user, file, folder, and device so you always have visibility into where your corporate assets reside?
For EMC Syncplicity by Axway, the answer to all of these questions is yes. And, while Single-Sign On (SSO) is a really important feature for businesses, it’s only a start. True support for businesses and enterprises must include features that support IT in every gamut of what they do, from securing the environment to setting controls, deploying users at scale, providing end user support, and monitoring the system every step of the way!
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