Risky Business: Personal-Use Cloud Services in the Office

“A staggering 71 percent of small businesses that suffer from a cyber-attack never recover—it’s fatal,” states Rowan Trollope of Symantec.  After reading the article on eWeek titled Small Businesses at Risk from Online File Sharing: Symantec, it’s impressive how many SMB organizations have security problems due to consumer-based cloud services.  Employees want the most convenient way of doing their job, and they’re using personal-use online file sharing systems to do just that.  The problem?  Employees are using these file sharing services without the permission of IT, increasing the probability that sensitive company information will get hacked into and/or stolen.  As about 74% of respondents to Symantec’s “SMB File Sharing Survey” stated that they adopted online file sharing solutions to boost their own efficiency and productivity, what can be done to make employees aware of the risks involved in using such unauthorized systems?

Developing company file sharing policies would do a world of good, especially when your organization’s most valuable assets are on the line.  More than one-fifth of the respondents of Symantec’s survey failed to provide their employees with policies on how to share files within the organization, and it doesn’t surprise me that employees would find solutions to increase their productivity in the most convenient way possible if they aren’t given any restrictions.  It’s a competitive world out there, and if some random file sharing service provider is going to make your life easier and potentially so productive that your boss adores you, then the opportunity gets a little more enticing.  However, it’s a company’s job to establish from the start the risk involved in adopting such personal cloud-based file sharing services.  The threat to company assets will only decrease if company’s establish and monitor file sharing practices or even adopt a companywide file sharing solution.

SmartFile is a business file mangement platform that gives you more control, compliance and security.