On the enterprise level, it’s becoming harder and harder to seal up all the loose ends of data. With thousands upon thousands of users (maybe more) within an enterprise company’s ecosystem, it’s virtually impossible to ensure that all data remains in-house permanently.
Can the average IT infrastructure manage and scale all data that’s shared between thousands of users within a company? Probably not. However, if an IT manager is well versed in how data is often leaked, they can shore up defences, or at least have a plan in place for when something major gets out there.
Four Common Areas Data is Most Commonly Leaked
# 1. Spreadsheets
It’s true, spreadsheets are the lifeblood of any company’s data pool. But they can also be easily printed and shared via email, cloud storage or SMS. Many companies try to password protect sensitive spreadsheets, but this doesn’t stop tech-savvy users from sharing this information if they really need to.
# 2. New Technology Testing and Development
In the testing and development of new technology, sensitive data is often shared in unprotected formats, which makes it easy for just about anyone within your company to steal data they shouldn’t have access to.
# 3. Printers and Other Peripheral Technology
This is pretty cut and dry. As thousands upon thousands of print jobs make it to your printer or fax machines, things got lost in the mix. Nosey people take things from trash bins and distribute them at their own discretion. This is completely out of your control. That is, unless you pay someone to stand guard at your printer’s trash bin. Hey, if you’ve got the budget, why not, right? Another solution may be to add a shredder next to the bin so people can shred sensitive documents before they hit the trash.
SharePoint is becoming a big part of enterprise collaboration and data management. Poorly managed SharePoint systems can be the bane of any company’s existence if sensitive company data is leaked. If this is happening on a fairly regular basis, you may need to re-evaluate your SharePoint system and how it is being deployed on a large scale. Look at options like hosting it on Rackspace, a system designed to handle it, or scaling back its use in-house.
This will be the year that wars will be won and lost over data security. Fingers will be pointed at IT processes, or a lack of accountability throughout your company’s ecosystem. New, flashy systems will be created. The truth is that data security sits on the shoulder of everyone in your company.
The IT department needs to realize that there really are things out of their control, and personnel within your company need to take responsibility for handling data. This may take a re-imagining of the way you handle your in-house data management and distribution policy.
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