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3 Reasons Smart Companies Steer Clear of Free File Hosting Providers
Regardless of the industry that they're operating in, more and more businesses are turning towards file sharing for collaborative and productivity reasons in today's modern environment.
It's now easier than ever for a group of employees to work on the same file at the same time, even if they aren't in the same physical location. Employees can also be just as productive at home as they can in the office.
When you begin to look for file sharing solutions, however, there are three very important (and smart) reasons in particular that companies should steer clear of free file hosting providers.
Why Free File Hosting Providers Are Not Always The Best Choice
Protecting the Data
One of the most important reasons why companies steer clear of free file hosting providers has to do with an attempt to protect company employees from sending or receiving sensitive information within folders that can be accessed publicly. A solution like Dropbox may be incredibly convenient and user friendly, but anyone with the right username and password combination can log into an account and access every last bit of data stored inside.
If a user accidentally uploads a file to a public folder instead of a private one, a person trying to access the file wouldn't even need that login information - they would just need the URL.
Protecting the Network
Another reason why companies steer clear of free file hosting providers has to do with the fact that they often lack certain security provisions that make them a truly trustworthy solution in the first place. In terms of a free provider, the emphasis of their business model is usually on "free." They may lack the necessary resources (or desire) to ward off more advanced data breaches, would could instantly put your mission critical data at risk just by virtue of the fact that your employees are using the service at all.
Lack of Necessary Tools
Perhaps the most important reason why companies steer clear of free file hosting providers, however, has to do with a general lack of administrative controls and monitoring capabilities. Your IT staff can't use a free file hosting provider to lock down permissions on an account-by-account basis, for example - you're lucky if you can segregate public and private folders at all. This usually means that all employees have access to anything stored on the hosting provider's server, whether they need that information to do their job or not. This is particularly tricky when employees leave the company.
By switching to a paid solution or by investing in something like SFTP, you have complete control over who is accessing data, why they are accessing it and where it is accessible from at all times.
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About Martin Horan
Founder of FTP Today and an expert in secure file transfer and Internet protocols. A software and IT geek since a young age, Martin has successfully led his companies through the digital age by spotting market niches and filling them with quality IT services.