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Thursday, October 03, 2013

Don't make employees choose between security and convenience

By pursuing a careful, well-considered strategy, firms can enable secure file transfers without sacrificing convenience.

Category:   Secure File Transfer

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For any business to thrive, it must achieve balance in countless areas. Whether the issue is investment, expansion, advertising or any other consideration, over- or under-committing to such efforts can prove disastrous.

This is particularly true when it comes to the issue of data access. For the vast majority of organizations, employees need to be able to access a wide range of information in order to conduct their job responsibilities. Yet the easier it is to access this data, the more vulnerable a company may be to data theft, loss or exposure. Obviously, this presents a serious dilemma for firms in every industry, one with extremely serious consequences.

At least, this is how the matter appears on the surface. In reality, data access is one area where businesses do not need to choose between security and convenience. On the contrary, by pursuing a careful, well-considered strategy, firms can achieve both of these objectives. And a key component of successful efforts in this regard is secure file transfer technology.

Secure convenience
In order to offer employees the ability to access corporate data conveniently and securely, it is imperative that firms invest in the right solutions. There are many options available to organizations when it comes to sharing data, but few that can successfully guarantee both of these objectives.

Security is, in many ways, the easier aspect. Decision-makers looking to find tools that can securely send data throughout their organizations will not have difficulty finding such options.

The problem is that, in many cases, these secure solutions will be very difficult or time-consuming for employees to utilize. As businesses become increasingly self-service oriented, a great deal of data is no longer being handled exclusively by the IT department. Workers in every department now need access to this information to conduct their job functions. And these employees will not have significant technical experience or know-how in many cases. If a file transfer solution is relatively complicated, it may frustrate users.

The same is also true if utilizing these options is time-consuming. Most workers are very busy throughout the day and will not look kindly upon any operations that delay their productivity.

Consequently, if a company deploys a file transfer solution that is either difficult or time-consuming to use, there is a very high likelihood that some, or even most, workers will instead turn to less secure options, such as Dropbox or consumer-grade email, for their file transfer needs. This will make their lives easier, but put the company at risk.

Best of both worlds
Fortunately, not all secure file transfer solutions fall into these categories. There are indeed a number of options which are easy to use and enable rapid information sharing while ensuring that all files remain fully protected while in transit.

To find such high-end solutions, business decision-makers must conduct sufficient research, evaluating all available options. In particular, they should consider reputation - have firms using this solution experienced any data breaches? - and ensure that the solution was designed with the end-user in mind.