Here are three strategies for increasing secure file sharing use among employees.

Nov 26th, 2013

For any business to operate effectively, it must ensure that its sensitive information remains protected at all times. Secure file sharing solutions are a key part of any such effort. Only by putting dedicated tools in place can a firm's leaders enable employees to send and receive files safely. Failure to offer these resources will force workers to turn to less secure options, such as consumer grade box file sharing services.

Yet investing in and deploying secure file sharing tools does not guarantee that employees will actually utilize these offerings. To this end, business decision-makers must adopt additional strategies.

1. Emphasize ease of use
Even conscientious employees will usually prioritize convenience over strict adherent to the rules. They want to do their jobs as efficiently as possible, and if a particular policy is seen as an obstacle, it will likely be ignored.

To avoid this, businesses need to choose easy-to-use secure file sharing solutions that do not impose a significant burden on workers. Just as importantly, business decision-makers must emphasize this ease of use to employees, or else they may assume that the solution is burdensome, even if it is not. By adopting a strategy of emphasizing the tool's benefits, rather than the dangers posed by insecure practices, firms can make adherence to secure solutions easy for workers to accept.

2. Establish strong incentives
To further encourage best practices when it comes to secure file sharing tools, it is also necessary that business leaders establish strong incentives for workers to adhere to proper practices. These should include both rewards and potential punishments. In the former category, decision-makers may want to consider organization-wide prizes for extended periods without a data breach. Conversely, penalties should be established if employees are found to have engaged in risky behavior by ignoring the secure options.

3. Enforce
For the incentives described to be effective, it is critical that the business leaders enforce the relevant policies regularly and dependably. One of the reasons why lax, unsecured behaviors seep into businesses is that leaders fail to enforce established policies after the initial implementation stage. For a company to truly remain secure, security must be an ongoing priority, and this is only possible if business leaders dedicate themselves to long-term enforcement.