Cloud-Based File Sharing: A Checklist to Keep Your Files Secure
While enterprise cloud-based solutions have become a top way for companies to share their files, 66% of workers continue to use free file sharing to share corporate documents. When employees use these free options, your company could be at risk.
There are a number of reasons public cloud file sharing options problematic, but the biggest drawback is the lack of security. You might be tempted to use Dropbox or Google Drive due to the convenience, low price tag, or simplicity. However, these public solutions don’t provide the granular access controls or the security protections to meet your company needs.
To ensure your data is secure across all fronts and your employees are aligning with your policies, you need the right cloud-based file sharing solution. Check out these tips on how you can keep your company’s cloud file sharing practices uniform.
Ensure Ease of Use
The first step to having a standardized cloud-based file sharing process is choosing an easy-to-use solution. Keep in mind – not everyone in your company is an IT expert. So, if they’re not familiar with a new cloud file sharing solution and they have a difficult time adapting, they are going to find ways to work around the solution. For instance, they might continue to send files attached to emails, save them on their hard drives, or use non-secure public file sharing solutions.
If you want to get your employees and your customers on board with a new secure cloud-based file sharing solution, you need choose a solution that’s simple to use and easy to adapt to.
Private Cloud vs. Public Cloud
Use this guide to answer your most common questions related to the cloud.
Employ Secure Features
Ultimately, the reasons you’re adopting a cloud-based file sharing solution for your company is to keep your files secure. If you’re a healthcare company handling ePHI (electronic protected health information) or a government contractor subject to ITAR compliance standards, it’s imperative that you keep data secure.
With the right file sharing solution, you don’t have to worry about employing security measures yourself, because they’ll already be built into your solution. Choose a cloud-based file sharing solution that has the following features.
- Expiring Guest Access – Your clients don’t need constant access to your ensure cloud-based file sharing solution. But, there are times you will need to share files with them. Look for a solution that offers expiring guest access capabilities. This provides the convenience of guest access, without giving away permanent access to your data.
- Multi-factor Authentication – You need to be sure that the users logging into your cloud-based FTP solution really are who they claim to be. This is a crucial aspect of data security. Choose a solution that has multi-factor authentication methods. This verifies your users with both a password and an additional piece of information, like a code sent to their mobile device or a security question only they would know the answer to.
- Encryption – Whether your data is being transferred or it’s at rest on your cloud-based server, you need to be sure that it’s encrypted. Look for a solution with the strongest encryption methods. Top solutions, like FTP Today use 256-bit encryption with 2048-bit keys that protect your data from even the strongest brute force attacks.
- Dedicated Firewalls – Your data needs to be secure from both an internal and external standpoint. You want to avoid a data breach from an external hacker, and you also want to ensure that other companies using the same cloud solution as your company won’t have access to your files. Look for a service provider that offers firewalls to prevent both internal and external threats.
- Disaster Recovery – You never know when a disaster might happen, from a natural disaster to a technical malfunction. In the event of a problem, you want to be sure that your files are still accessible and recoverable. Look for a cloud-based file sharing solution that automatically backs up your files so nothing is lost.
Establish a BYOD Protocol
Today, it seems like everyone has their phones in their hands, even at work. More and more people are relying on tablets, mobile phones, and personal laptops to the office or doing work on these devices at home. In fact, “87% of companies rely on their employees using personal devices to access business apps.” That’s a huge percentage of your workforce.
While this increase in mobility enhances productivity and convenience, it can also open your data up to security vulnerabilities. To effectively keep your data safe, you need a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) protocol, and a cloud-based file sharing solution to support that protocol.
Many cloud-based files sharing solutions may have mobile accessibility, but you need one that maintains security standards regardless of the device you use to access it. So, look for a solution that gives administrators the power to manage the mobile version of their cloud solution. Features like real-time monitoring, granular access controls, and IP address restriction can keep data safe even if mobile devices are lost or stolen.
Offer Training and Support
Again, not everyone in your company is an IT expert. So, it’s crucial that you choose both the right cloud-based file sharing solution and the right solution provider, too. You need an FTP solution host that offers initial training to get your team up to speed on your new solution and ongoing support to ensure your solution is operating efficiently.
First, talk to your solution provider about the training they offer. Be sure to choose one that offers training videos and sessions specifically for your team to ask questions pertinent to their actual jobs. Cloud-based file sharing might be a new concept to many of your employees, so adequate training in imperative for maintaining productivity and keeping operations efficient.
Next, you should research the support options provided by the solutions providers you’re considering. For example, FTP Today offers 24/7 support, and they never outsource technical support operations. They have a team that’s accessible to both administrators and users, via a toll-free number or online ticketing system. Regardless of the issue, they’re available to find a resolution.
Moving to the cloud doesn’t have to be a scary experience. Before you invest in your next cloud-based file sharing solution, make sure it has all of these essential features. Your employees will appreciate a solutions that’s easy to use, and your clients will appreciate the advanced security measures.
Want to learn more about why a private cloud-based file sharing solution is ideal for your company? Download this free guide to find out.
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.