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Employees Sneak Company Data via File Sharing Services, Study Shows

More and more employees are relying on file sharing services to store company data, even if they know they are not allowed to, according to a study published by storage company Nasuni.

The research, based on the answers of about 1,300 corporate IT users, reveals that company data frequently lands on consumer-grade storage providers that can’t be controlled or managed by corporate IT teams.

The study revealed that one in five employees uses Dropbox to store work-related files. Half of these users continue to use file sharing services even though IT department expressly forbids it. This habit is not limited to employees, as decision-makers in the respective companies also admit infringing the IT policy by using unsanctioned cloud storage.

Consumer-grade file sharing services are just a small part of the problem. Ever since the BYOD boom, employees tend to think less of data security in favor of comfort by storing critical information on their own devices that do not use or support encryption, or by simply pushing them on FTPs and in-the-cloud storage.

Consumer file sharing services and mobile devices have introduced enterprise employees to a new world of powerful, easy to use capabilities,” said Andres Rodriguez, CEO of Nasuni. “And, as our survey demonstrates, because the enterprise has been very slow to roll out services with a comparable value, their employees are using the same services at work that they use to share photos and documents with their friends. As a result, enterprise IT is rapidly losing control of corporate data. It’s a risky proposition that IT needs to be in front of, and not behind.

Bitdefender currently offers a backup, sync and share application that allows corporate users to safely upload their data to the cloud while enjoying a level of security matched only by locally-encrypted storage. The application is readily available for download and comes with a free 2 GB storage plan.

About The Author

Senior E-Threat Analyst

Bogdan Botezatu is living his second childhood at Bitdefender as senior e-threat analyst. When he is not documenting sophisticated strains of malware or writing removal tools, he teaches extreme sports such as surfing the web without protection or rodeo with wild Trojan horses. He believes that most things in life can be beat with strong heuristics and that antimalware research is like working for a secret agency: you need to stay focused at all times, but you get all the glory when you catch the bad guys.

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