File Sharing Etiquette

It used to be that a company’s files were stored in physical file cabinets and it was only polite to put those files in the correct cabinet or drawer. Now that most documents are stored virtually, file sharing has altered and expanded the etiquette rules.

For administrators or users of a file sharing platform, etiquette means following certain best practices so that your organization’s files are neat, easily accessible, and so that tempers don’t run hot over the location or status of a particular file. Here are some etiquette practices to keep file sharing order and decorum.

What’s in a Name?

Your organization may have certain guidelines (or outright rules) pertaining to naming your documents. Whatever they are, make sure you adhere to them. The 10 seconds it takes to name a file correctly, can save a lot of headaches in the future. But even if they don’t, you may want to implement some best practices for yourself.

You may want to see a lot of information about the file in its title like what version it is or who edited it last and when, but the best file names are generally short and sweet. If it’s too long then you won’t be able to see the whole name on your screen.

If you absolutely need all of the information in the name of the file, then you can choose to utilize abbreviations to shorten the file name. Just make sure to have all the team members use the same abbreviations. Disaster could strike if a coworker mistakes the “-D” at the end of your file name to mean “done” instead of “draft”

Similarly, if you need a date in the file name then you should also standardize the way you display them. The best way to write dates is the year, then the month, then the day, with a YYYY-MM-DD format. Make sure the month and day always have two digits, even if that means using a 0. This will keep your files in chronological order on an alphabetized list.

Tag It

With a file sharing platform like SmartFile, you can also choose to tag your files with customized attributes such as:

  • Pending
  • Q1
  • Expense report
  • Important
  • Budget

Tags can help you when using SamrtFile’s search function since you can choose to search by tag. For example, if you’ve structured your files so that your expense reports are under each individual client, but you need to collect them for financial purposes, you can search your expense report tag and bring them all up at once.

You can use tags any way you wish, but just like file naming conventions, it’s important that you remain consistent. It can be helpful to create a reference document for any customized tagging and naming conventions that your organization uses so that users can quickly reference it later if (more like when) they forget.

Structure Files

If you have your own office, you can keep it as messy or as clean as you want it. But if you were to share an office with a coworker, you would do them the common courtesy of keeping any shared spaces or resources tidy (or at least you should). The same goes for your shared files.

Does it make sense for files to be organized by departments? By team member? By project? While there is no one right way, there are certainly a couple of best practices that can help keep you and your files on track.

The way you structure your files will depend on your industry and your company, but once you find it, stick with it. Consistency is key. A helter-skelter attitude to file organization can severely limit your productivity. Inconsistencies from one user to another can cause you and your team members unnecessary frustration when you need to find a particular set of files.

Using subfolders can help keep things straight, but there is such a thing as too organized. When you are creating subfolders, try to limit it to 3-5 levels. You want to be able to get an understanding of their contents with a quick glance. Getting too granular with your subfolders has your users clicking down level by level (too many and they may feel like they’re in the seventh level of Hell, clicking for all eternity).

Templates Are Your Friend

As you are organizing your files, you may notice that you use similar folders and subfolders for each client or project. One helpful trick is to create a folder template using placeholder names and empty folders. Then you simply copy the structure and paste it wherever it needs to go. You can always adjust it as needed for clients or projects that are special cases (and you’ll always have clients that think they are the most special).

Having a premade template will not only save you time in the future, but it reinforces whatever structure you have decided to use. Your team members will be more likely to copy and paste an entire premade structure than they are to create folders and subfolders individually.

Clean Up After Yourself

Nobody likes a slob. Even if it’s only virtual. Make sure you are deleting files after you are done with them, especially if they only pertain to you. Maybe you like to create a reference document for your report that helps you keep your thoughts organized. That’s fine! But after you’ve created that report, you don’t need your reference document anymore. Don’t make others sift through virtual piles of notes to yourself.

This doesn’t mean you should go on a deleting spree. If a file seems to be unnecessary but didn’t involve your input, ask the person that is associated with the file before you delete it.

Imagine someone else cleaning your home and deciding what to keep and what to throw away. That napkin with scribbles all over it may have an important phone number written on it. The same may be true of a file that looks like clutter.

You should also check the rules of your company or industry. Many industries like construction, healthcare, banking, etc., have rules and regulations about how long certain types of documents must be retained. It may help to come up with a document retention plan so you know how long you need to keep certain information.

If you’re the one with the responsibility of maintaining your organization’s file sharing platform, then etiquette also demands that you explain why you are asking your team members to conform. Let them know that this isn’t some power trip and you’re not a tyrant, but that it will actually help them in the long run. Similarly, if someone has taken the time to organize your company’s files, then it’s only polite to follow those standards.

It’s much easier to adhere to file sharing etiquette when your platform is user-friendly, efficient, and customizable. Give SmartFile a try for free today — no credit card required!

Sign Up

How to Leverage File Sharing in a Remote Work Environment

Did you know that 43% of Americans spend at least some time working remotely? Remote work is a core part of many company’s flexible working initiatives and it comes with some great benefits: you have more control over your schedule, you avoid office politics, etc. And when you use remote workers for your organization you can cut some of your operating costs significantly.

But for your workday to run smoothly, you’ll need access to your files and documents wherever you are—and securely. With a file sharing solution, you can do business anywhere you have an internet connection without worrying about whether or not your files are safe.

Whether you are working remotely, or employ those that do, here’s how to leverage file sharing in a remote work environment.

Keep Work and Personal Separate

If you are a remote worker, chances are you use one computer for both work and play. And with constant access to your professional files, it can be difficult to stop yourself from working after hours or on the weekend when what you really need is to relax and refresh. File sharing can help you keep work at work (even if your work is located on the couch and your uniform is your pajamas).

Build a Strong Structure
With file sharing and having a good work-life balance, it comes down to your file structure. Treat yourself like a client and give yourself a separate folder for anything that isn’t related to work. This may seem obvious but some people just keep everything in one huge mess on their desktop, and that is hardly conducive to an efficient remote work atmosphere.

Compartamentalize Your Files, Not Your Emotions
Once your files are in your personal folder, it’s up to you how you want to organize them, though we never recommend file anarchy. If you keep your files separate, you can keep your mind separate, too and then you don’t accidentally send your client a personal art project that (for some reason) has a file name similar to their project.

Once you have your files nicely compartmentalized, you can give your clients their own portal so you don’t need to worry about them viewing your personal projects. You control what they do and don’t see.

Extra tip: if you’re having a particularly hard time turning off your work brain, you could even create two different users for yourself: You (Work) and You (Personal). Then adjust your own permissions so you can’t access your work files without switching users first.

Collaboration is Key

A remote working environment means that collaborating on a project isn’t as simple as popping your head over your cubicle for a quick question or booking your office’s conference room. But just because you can’t be in the same physical space as your coworkers or employees, doesn’t mean you have to work in isolation.

Using a file sharing solution simplifies collaboration on a document or project in a couple of ways. First of all, with a file sharing solution like SmartFile, you can have an unlimited amount of users so that whether you need the input of 1 or 100 coworkers or clients, you can give access to whoever needs to have it.

That is not to say that anyone who has access to the platform can see any file that lives there. You can set permission rules for those that are using the platform that are anywhere from simple to intricate.

These granular permissions are especially helpful if your business collaborates with contract workers or freelancers who you may only employ for a limited amount of time. When you hire them on you can give them access to only the projects they are currently working on and when they have finished simply retract the permission. This ensures that they have all the information they need to do their work, and you can be confident that you can have a clean break once they are finished working

If you have ever collaborated on a project then you understand the (sometimes endless) editing process of tweaking, adjusting, poking and prodding to make sure that the work is exactly as you (and everyone else involved) want it.

But have you ever begun editing a document and then get a bad feeling that something was missing? Only to you realize halfway through the process that you’ve been working off an old version. How frustrating!

A file sharing solution that comes with a file versioning feature lets you and your collaborators keep track of all of the versions of your files so that you don’t have to worry about needing to backtrack. What if your first idea really was the best one?

Time Management

If you’re working remotely, you don’t necessarily have to work normal hours. In fact, you may find that you are the most productive in the evening and decide to do your errands in the afternoon. But just like any worker, you need to be able to manage your time effectively so that your client or boss is happy with your work.

Perhaps you’re waiting on final approval from your manager before you hand it off to the client, or you need one final bit of information so you can finish. Whatever it is, with file sharing you don’t need to wait for confirmation. As soon as a file is uploaded you will get an email so that you can address it.

On the flip side, if you are the one using remote workers, it can be hard to keep things uniform. Outlining your preferred naming or file structure may slip your mind, and before you know it, your four freelancers are now using four different methods of organization, and you don’t recognize any of them.

With a file sharing solution like SmartFile, you don’t need to waste time looking for your important files ever again. You can utilize powerful advanced search options to search your content to help you find indexed content within your documents. Along with search, SmartFile also offers an instant filter feature that will narrow the narrow results through dates and file size.

Working remotely comes in all shapes and sizes: from part-time freelancing to working from home once a week to full-time remote work. However you utilize it, for yourself or your workers, you’ll want to make sure that make the most of it. Remote work has been shown to increase worker productivity, and a smart file sharing solution can help you be even more productive.

Let SmartFile help you make remote work run as smoothly as possible. Give SmartFile a try for free today — no credit card required!

Sign Up

5 Security Tips for File Sharing

Whether it’s your client’s financial data or proprietary industry secrets, your business probably deals with sensitive information multiple times a day. Keeping your files secure is crucial for protecting your clients and your company’s reputation.

The safest thing to do would be never to let these files see the light of day again, but of course, that isn’t reasonable. You need to be able to share files internally and externally, but protecting files while still making them available collaboratively can be a challenge.

Here are some tips on sharing files securely.

1. Educate and Inform

It’s important that your employees have a good understanding of the nature of the information your organization has and risks that are associated with mishandling it, unintentional or otherwise.

It may help to assess and classify the data that you handle to determine the level of security you need to protect them. Sharing a client’s tax records will most likely need to be dealt with more care than the minutes of your weekly meeting. Cybercriminals will probably not be targeting the brilliant idea for introducing casual Friday that Joe brought up 27 meetings ago.  

If you can demonstrate to your employees that cybersecurity is a priority in your organization, then they will take it more seriously. Hold training to teach your staff about the latest cyber threats and preventive practices. Make sure your team members know what files they can and cannot share outside of your business and the most secure ways to do so.

2. If You Give a Man a Phish

By the end of 2017, the average user was receiving 16 malicious emails per month. Phishing emails are becoming increasingly convincing by mirroring the look and language of legitimate companies like universities or banks.

One preventative practice you can put into place to avoid visiting fraudulent sites is to hover over links before you click on them. If the URL doesn’t match the site you are expecting to visit or looks suspicious, don’t click on it. For example, if the link says your bank name, but the URL says, don’t click on it!

Many malicious emails also use infected attachments to gain access to your sensitive files. If you receive an email from someone you don’t know or weren’t expecting, don’t open the attachment. Even if you do recognize the sender, that doesn’t mean you are off the hook. It’s a possibility that the sender may not know the file is infected or that their email account has been compromised.

Always set your anti-malware software to scan all incoming and outgoing emails automatically, rather than manually scanning them when you see a suspicious attachment.

3. Use Better P@ssw0rd$

We’re long past the days where “password123” is secure enough for your confidential files. You need a complex password to keep your information safe. Here are a few good guidelines for creating a secure password.

  • Use 12 – 15 characters
  • Avoid using dictionary words, slang, curse words, email addresses, names, places, etc.
  • Write down a password hint (not the actual password) and keep it in a safe place
  • Use different letters, numbers, and special symbols that you’ve never used before

Even if there aren’t any character requirements for a given website or file sharing solution, you should try and match these standards on your own. The more characters and symbols your passwords contain, the more difficult they are to guess.

Once you find that perfect combination of letters, numbers, and special characters, it may be tempting to use it across multiple sites. But if a hacker is able to guess it, then they’ll have access to all of your information. You may think your password is impossible to guess, but cybercriminals have many dubious ways to crack it. And please don’t just add the number one to the end of a password you already use. You aren’t fooling anyone.

There is yet another step to making sure that your passwords are as secure and that is by changing them or updating them every 90 days. This may seem overwhelming, but I can guarantee that a being a victim of cybercrime is going to be much, much worse.

And if you don’t think you can remember all your passwords for all your accounts (and really, who could?), you might give a password manager a try. They can generate and keep strong passwords for you so you don’t have to change them manually.

4. Avoid USBs When You Can

USBs can be very helpful when transferring files from one device to another, but there are quite a few dangers that come along with the convenience. It’s so easy to lose a USB device. Think about how many USBs you’ve seen lying around, forgotten in a computer port, or have run through the laundry (twice). When you do lose one, you have no idea where that information will end up.

And if you’re the one that finds a USB, you should never connect it your computer. You may think that you are getting a free USB, but it has the potential to ruin your device. They can pick up infections when plugged into an infected computer then they can spread those infections as soon as they’re plugged into another device. If you do need to use a USB drive, make sure that you scan it with your anti-virus or anti-spyware before opening any documents or folders.

Why take the chance that your files could be lost forever? Or worse, used to exploit you and your company.

5. Use a File Sharing Solution

So if you shouldn’t use USBs and emailing and opening documents is also a risk, what can you do? Look to the experts of a file sharing solution. When you can access your files from anywhere, you don’t need to send documents back and forth constantly. Not only is your information encrypted, but with a file sharing solution, you don’t need to fear files being lost or corrupted. Your provider will be able to resolve your issues.

You also have permissions control over who has access to what file and can receive email notifications about file and user activity. And some file sharing solutions, like SmartFile, offer visual tools and detailed logs to help you understand the usage so you can identify outliers and protect your data.

With a solution like SmartFile, we can keep your files safe and your data secure. Employees might still fall victim to phishing scams or click on malicious links, but you can significantly reduce your risks and get some peace of mind when you share files with SmartFile.

Let SmartFile keep your files safe from damage and unauthorized access. Give it a try for free today — no credit card required!Sign Up

How Hosted File Sharing & FTP Help You Scale Effectively

Even with all the strategic planning in the world, you can’t really know where your business will be in the future. It will ebb and flow over time; your workforce grows and changes and so do your file storage needs. That’s why you need a scalable file sharing solution to fit your business needs.


If you’re a small business, chances are you either can’t afford or can’t justify purchasing a server for data storage and retrieval. In-house servers require you to buy hardware costing thousands of dollars that’s sufficient for today but won’t meet your needs down the road.

A growing business means more files. And more files means you need a place to put them. If you outgrow your server, you’ll have to buy an upgrade. Or perhaps you buy a server that fits your current needs, but it still needs to be maintained and updated. This can leave you high and dry if there is an issue, unable to save files and leaving you frustrated.

Or maybe even worse, you invest the money to get an expensive piece of hardware, but your small team only uses a fraction of its capacity. Buying a server yourself can waste time and money that you don’t need to waste. As a small business, you simply can’t afford it.


In a world that wants to accommodate the most amount of people possible instead of supplying their individual needs, hosted file sharing lets you get exactly what you need when you need it. Whether you have five employees or 50,000, or you need an unlimited amount of storage, file sharing hosts like SmartFile can offer a plan that works for you.

A customized storage solution can be changed if you need to scale your business up or down. Typically, your monthly fee is based on the number of employees you need the solution to support, and the amount of storage you need.

But don’t worry if you need to make a change down the road; changes can be reflected instantly on your account. Simple as that.

On-Premises Scales Even Larger

Sometimes a business outgrows their office space and has employees working across the city or state. Or maybe as a global company, you have offices in different countries. Your file sharing solution needs to also have multiple storage options.

An on-premises solution like FileHub is hosted behind your firewall and designed to grow with you. It easily integrates into your network as a self-hosted file sharing and management tool. As your processes change, you can modify the existing user interface for a more efficient workflow that works for your situation. Who wouldn’t want ease with their side of enterprise file sharing?

As your organization grows, your time will be allocated to different tasks rather than others. An on-premises file sharing solution can scale with you by providing time-saving features, such as:

  • Quarterly updates to give you the newest features and customizations
  • Advanced global search to find any file on any attached storage
  • Compliance and audit trails.

File Share and Scale

Not sure where to start? Here are some tips to help you utilize file sharing while scaling:

Use your numbers. Your company probably uses financial projections to make decisions about operations, so why not use them to help you decide how much space is sufficient or how many users will need access to the file sharing solution. Your forecasted projections can help manage the size of your account or forecast when you need to adjust.

Have someone on your team dedicated to evaluating how you’re using your file sharing account and where the inefficiencies may be. Do you have too many versions of the same document? Does your file sharing solution also hold employees’ personal documents? Letting someone help you structure and consolidate your files is increasingly important as you scale.

Finally, know when to purge. Some people find it difficult to let go of files that may be of use sometime in the future. But trust us, that instruction manual for a software that doesn’t exist anymore probably won’t come in handy. Just because old files aren’t taking up physical space on your desk or in a cabinet, doesn’t mean they aren’t wasting space.

Whether you need a simple way to share files with clients and coworkers, instant access to your files even when you aren’t at the office, a reliable data backup solution, or all of these, a scalable hosted file sharing is one of the best investments a business can make.

How We Can Help

As file sharing experts, we know how to guide you through change and growth and provide you with the tools you need to do it. Give SmartFile a try for free today — no credit card required!

Sign Up

The Difference Between SFTP & FTPS and Why It Matters

In order to know the differences between SFTP and FTPS, first, you need to have a basic understanding of file transfer protocol (FTP). As secure FTP hosting providers, SmartFile knows a thing or two thousand about the ins and outs of optimally transferring files.

Just as the name suggests, FTP is used to transfer computer files between a client and server on a computer network. FTP utilizes a username and password, but those credentials are sent in an easily readable plaintext form. Since they are being sent without encryption, the credentials are vulnerable to being intercepted and stolen.

Back in the Good Old Days

When FTP was created ― which, kid you not, was before the Internet ― people assumed that internet activity was not malicious. People didn’t think we would try to hack each other or steal data, and it wasn’t created with security in mind. My, how the times change.

Since people have figured out that they can ransack others’ digital assets for pleasure or gain file sharing demanded a security evolution. And that’s why FTPS and SFTP exist today.

Well, What are FTPS and SFTP?

What is FTPS?

FTPS takes the original FTP and enhances it with a layer of encryption from SSL. While the communications can be easily read, encryption happens on both command and data channels.

FTPS also requires your connection to be authenticated with a certificate. When these certificates are signed by a trusted certificate authority, this provides assurance that the client is connected to the requested server.

What is SFTP?

SFTP is a protocol based on the network protocol SSH and assumes the server has already authenticated the client.

Unlike FTPS, this protocol encrypts the credentials and files that are being transferred in binary so that they are unreadable.

Let’s put this into layman’s terms:

  • FTPS adds a layer around the existing FTP protocol. This layer lets you encrypt your communication, letting the client connect securely to the server with no negotiation allowed.
  • SFTP allows two machines to meet, verify that both are legit, and then connect so file sharing can happen. As an extension to the SSH protocol (find that definition here), it utilizes that connection to complete any and all actions.
Continue Reading Below
secure ftp cloud storage providers

GET STARTED NOW: Need a cloud hosted and secure FTP server that can handle SFTP or FTPS connections? Then try SmartFile free, no credit card required!

Continue reading “The Difference Between SFTP & FTPS and Why It Matters”

SaaS Solutions Provide Higher Education with Competitive Advantage

The World Economic Forum published their annual Global Competitiveness Report ranking The United States the 2nd most competitive economy in the world out of 137, which is its highest rating in 8 years. Higher education, job training, quality of companies, market size and technological capabilities all played a role.

The contributing factors that result in a competitive economy are in and of themselves competitive as the U.S. continues to foster a culture of innovation and opportunity for success. Higher education is a good example of this as colleges and universities seek to attract students who perform well and successfully land jobs, increasing their graduation and placement rates and thus repeating the cycle.

In order to attract prospective students, colleges employ multiple approaches, including offering financial incentives and scholarships to offset student costs, creating partnerships with businesses and organizations that allow for meaningful internships and project experience, and providing opportunities on-campus for meaningful experiences and connections. In addition, colleges and universities are becoming increasingly aware of the role of technology in creating competitive advantage in both their efforts to attract students as well as how they function internally.

From a recruiting standpoint, technology is being utilized in digital marketing efforts, social media, and by taking advantage of newer software that allows inquisitive prospects to take online campus tours. All of these SaaS solutions being leveraged in the attempt to attract and gain the interest of students.

Internally, it’s equally important that technology play a role in competitive market advantage by finding solutions that allow colleges and universities to streamline processes, operate more efficiently, reduce costs, and maintain privacy and compliance standards. One SaaS solution that addresses all these is the replacement of FTP systems with cloud storage and online file sharing.

Cloud storage and online file sharing allows university administration to store massive amounts of data in a safe and cost effective way. Solutions include cloud storage as well as on-premise solutions and even hybrids. This SaaS solution also addresses privacy and compliance standards, both domestically and for foreign exchange students while also centralizing oversight by allowing for easy management and control of user access and permissions that meet the specific needs and requirements of a school’s administration and staff. Further, integrations with other products and software generally greater provide ease of use.

Whether protecting student data, segregating department files, managing access, or complying with regulations, an online cloud storage and file management SaaS solution like SmartFile meets all these needs and more.

Check out our Education webpage to see what other universities have leveraged this business solution and find out more about how SmartFile can meet your specific needs.

SmartFile as Controller and Processor

As a Controller

SmartFile needs to understand, at least partially communicate, and record internally, data on the consumers of our services (name, contact information, IP address, and billing information.)  By agreeing to our Terms of Service, users provide express consent.

We do not use tracking cookies, nor do we sell or transfer any of this data to third parties. We use third parties for certain supporting services.  Currently, these include our helpdesk, subscription management, and marketing systems.

Our security standards are compatible with GDPR, and available here. Our data breach policy is available here.

As a Processor

SmartFile is a file storage and management service serving business customers. The two ways our service is utilized are in the cloud (on our servers) and with our on-premise solution, both of which are where files are uploaded for storage and management. Our customers (controllers) control and determine what data and files are uploaded (some of which may contain personal data), who has access and rights to those files, and how long the records are stored. SmartFile, as an enterprise supporter and service provider, does its part to ensure appropriate safeguards and measures are in place that underpin these functions.


Secure Processing

Article 32 of the GDPR addresses the security of processing activities and requires organizations to have the appropriate technical and organizational measures in place to effectively and securely process data. At SmartFile, we have always taken this role seriously and provide a multifaceted approach, some of which include SAAS 70 and HIPPA certifications, encryption in transit and at rest, and control over connections and data transfer methods. For a detailed look at our security, please click here.


System Resiliency

System access, stability, and resiliency are critical to the health and operations of any business. We have multiple systems in place to ensure safety to that end including redundancy, multiple firewalls, alerts, activity logs, and direct access to view system status and downtime. We even post system updates and notification to social media. To view our current system status, please click here.


Data Subjects Rights, Requests, and Investigations

The rights of data subjects included within the GDPR regulation is one area where requirements have become more expansive (as noted in Article 5 and 12-21). Once our customers have taken the necessary precautions on their end for express consent and notification of data collection, SmartFile can support them in assisting with the protections, access to, requests of, and general management of that data. Our customers have complete autonomy and authority to determine what is stored and for how long, who has access, and the ability to make any necessary changes and updates upon request of the data subject or according to business need. Customers can also run reports to determine what has been done with files and respond accordingly. Our customers determine what data is obtained and stored and SmartFile keeps that data secure. We also have Support and Help/Tutorials to assist in these functions. Should our customers require assistance in performing any of these functions in the regular course of business, upon the request of a data subject, or as a result of an investigation, SmartFile can help our customers respond in a timely manner. For more information, please click here.


Appropriate Safeguards

In Article 46 of the GDPR, the regulation speaks to appropriate safeguards being in place to ensure reasonable protections for personal data along with “enforceable data subject rights and effective legal remedies for data subjects”, especially when transferring that data to a third country or international organization. Our customers need to be sure that their business partnership with us is legal, binding, and in compliance with GDPR standards.

SmartFile addresses this in our Terms of Service and Data Processing Agreements so that our customers can maintain confidence in partnering with us. Our customer contracts are legally binding and contain language with the necessary inclusions to be GDPR-compliant. For a link to our Terms of Service, a sample Data Processing Agreement (or request for one), or to contact us directly for more information, please click here.


Data Breach Notification

Keeping data secure is our number one priority and one of the main reasons our customers choose to do business with us. We pride ourselves on security. In today’s world, there is always a risk of a data breach, even with the best, most up-to-date measures in place to prevent it. In the event a data breach does occur, we have appropriate policies and procedures in place to provide timely notice to our customers, and any required agency, as stated in Articles 33 and 34 of the GDPR.  You can view that policy here.


« Back to GDPR

GDPR Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the GDPR?
A: The GDPR is an expansive regulation established within the European Union on behalf of its citizens and overseen by a Supervisory Authority in agreement with many other countries, including the U.S., to abide by its requirements or suffer stiff fines. The GDPR is the most far-reaching privacy regulation implemented to date, both in terms of its global adherence and its approach.

Q: How is the GDPR different from other regulations?
A: The GDPR differs from previous directives in a couple ways. First, it provides greater rights to data subjects in the following ways:

  • data subjects must be given specific information as to what data is collected, what will be done with that data, and to whom (the recipient) their data may go, and provide express consent for their personal data to be collected.
  • Data subjects have the right to request what information has been obtained from them, request that any errors be corrected, take their data with them (data portability), and have their data deleted upon their request (right to erasure).

Second, whereas previous regulations may have resulted in some software or administrative changes to comply, the GDPR positions companies to take a much more proactive, end-to-end approach to security and privacy in designing systems and technology around privacy as opposed to addressing privacy in a reactive or peripheral way.

Third, the notification process of data breaches requires impacted consumers to be notified within 72 hours. The Supervising Authority must be informed as well. The notification should include what data was compromised, how and when the breach occurred, and what remediation has or will take place.=

These are just a few, but important, ways the GDPR is different from previous regulations.

Q: What does SmartFile do with my data?
While SmartFile is a business-to-business model, individuals reach out to us on behalf of companies. We take consumer privacy very seriously, and we have the necessary systems and policies in place to keep their Personal Data secure. For a link to SmartFile’s privacy policy, please click here. For more information on SmartFile as a Data Controller, please click here.

Q: Can I count on SmartFile to assist and support my company’s GDPR efforts?
SmartFile serves business customers. Our role is generally acting as a Data Processor for these customers, who are in the role of Controller. As a Data Processor, however, privacy is very important to us and we are prepared for GDPR. While SmartFile can’t be responsible for the GDPR compliance of other companies, we can support your business as it seeks to meet the GDPR requirements by maintaining our own internal policies and privacy efforts. We can also assist you with requests you may have for data, as well as providing help and technical assistance for using the SmartFile system effectively to manage the files you store, which may include personal data. For more information on SmartFile as a Data Processor, please E.

Q: Does SmartFile offer a Data Processing Addendum (DPA)?
Yes. For more information on how customers may enter into the SmartFile Data Processing Addendum, please contact support.


« Back to GDPR