Real estate organizations have offices all over, and agents work from a wide variety of locations. For that reason, it’s critical to have global access to your data through a cloud file server.
At the same time, as your organization works with clients and their sensitive data, you need a secure portal. This leads many real estate organization to turn to a VPN-based access point, but this method is clunky and makes field work nearly impossible. In addition, WiFi networks with weak security open up opportunities to have your VPN hacked.
Alternatively, some teams turn to cloud file sharing vendors, but IT lacks visibility into the data and doesn’t host the data. In fact, the threat from cloud file sharing services is ominous as 92% of organizations have their cloud credentials for sale on the dark web.
So what is a real estate organization to do? Turn to SmartFile, an on-prem cloud file server. It’s the perfect hybrid IT solution for secure file storage and management. Let’s take the rest of the post to break down the benefits of a cloud file server hosted behind your firewall.
File Management Everyone Loves
SmartFile provides your team with global file access, secure file sharing, audit activity and various access methods. This creates an all-in-one file management tool that consolidates your existing hardware and other file tools into a single gateway.
If users want to access their files offsite, they can log in to your secure and branded web portal from their smartphone, tablet or laptop, and access the files they need. All activity within the app is tracked so IT knows if a file has been downloaded, copied or even deleted.
In real estate, there is a need for internal and external secure file sharing as well. This isn’t just about sending a file to an external client, it’s about receiving them, too. Your clients will see a branded gateway to upload files to their specific folder.
The client can use gateway rather than email, which may be copied and stored in up to 13 different places, so even if your email and the client’s is secure, the end file server might not be. You’re protecting your client from themselves. Here’s just one example of how easy it is to setup a private client portal for uploading or downloading documents.
In addition, you can still email clients the links to their files as an email attachment replacement. You can do this by just copying the secure shared link from the app or by using our Outlook client. This is very handy if you’re sending images of a property to a prospective client.
Your team doesn’t need to worry about attachment size limits or zipping files, and the end user can preview any download within the app. This also cuts down on your server load, because as I mentioned, those emails can be duplicated multiple times. With large PDF layouts or high-resolution images, this can really eat up bandwidth internally. Here’s a preview of sending a link via the Outlook client:
Finally, SmartFile’s various access methods ensure that everyone is happy. Want to use the web portal? It works on any device. Need FTP client access over FTPS? SmartFile can handle that, too. Looking for Outlook and Desktop integrations? Again, SmartFile answers the call. Do you need custom integration into your proprietary software? SmartFile has an industry leading API with 38 endpoints that interact at every layer of the application, giving you almost total control. This means that everyone from IT to your least tech-savvy employees can use SmartFile with ease.
Hosting your on-prem cloud file server enhances compliance. Your data is gated behind the firewalls in your corporate network and the firewalls within the device itself. In addition, the physical data either sits on your network in the data center that houses it. That means you determine the physical safeguards.
Another risk with pure cloud solutions is that they can be breached themselves. If there is a data breach on their end, your files are at risk, and with most of those solutions, you have no insight into file or user activity. If Johnny, your US-based accountant, is suddenly accessing data from China, you’ll struggle to find that out.
With SmartFile, you gain visibility into file and user activity. Thorough logs, interactive analytics and email alerts let you know what’s happening so you can prepare for future problems and answer and questions that may arise from an audit or e-discovery.
Alleviates Shadow IT
From an internal perspective, SmartFile eliminates many of the pain points that create file sharing related Shadow IT. Your non-IT employees will often turn to their personal Dropbox or email accounts if they’re dealing with large files they need to send externally. This is a big deal because according to SkyHighNetworks, 15.8% of these cloud accounts contain sensitive files, like personally identifiable information, social security numbers, and credit card numbers.
Some real estate companies build their own private cloud. While this makes sense, it takes tons of work that could be better spent elsewhere. In addition, there are many hidden costs you might not be considering, such as warranties, individual hardware components and more. These hidden costs will eat you up.
SmartFile delivers the best total cost of ownership for an on-prem cloud file server. SmartFile will take care of all maintenance issues for you, so you can focus on bigger picture items that affect the bottom line.
On-prem Cloud File Servers for Real Estate
Before investing heavily in new hardware or a cloud service, consider SmartFile’s on-prem device which delivers a true hybrid infrastructure. You’ll deliver a VPN alternative that gives your real estate team global file access, management and enhanced compliance.
Ready to See It In Action?
Let us give you a no-pressure demo to show you how you could benefit from the secure file management solutions provided by SmartFile. Set up your demo now!