Data Leaks- Is Your Company’s Data being leaked online?
Data leaks are becoming increasingly common and they can happen silently via a previously unknown entity. Indeed, there is a growing trend creeping into organizations of all industries and sizes in the form of unauthorized external: Shadow IT. Shadow IT are unauthorized cloud applications employees are using and downloading to perform work-related activities with company data. This can be file-sharing services like Dropbox or surveys such as Zoomerang. The list goes on and on.
Shadow IT is important to understand because if your employees are using these applications, they could potentially exposing you to external risks. These include hacking, system crashes & other IT disasters if they are not restricted. Shadow IT can include hardware, software, web services or cloud applications that employees turn to without IT authorization to accomplish their tasks and projects.
Why Should I be worried about Shadow IT & my employees accessing external cloud applications?
So what’s the problem? For starters, if you’re in a highly regulated industry like medical or financial services, you’re almost guaranteed to be flagrantly violating data privacy laws & the GDPR.
In addition, if you’re audited, you could end up facing BIG fines, not to mention legal fees and bad PR. Second, the barrier to entry is LOW.
Anyone with a browser and a credit card can purchase or enroll themselves into applications that integrate with your organization’s critical applications and/or store company data such as client lists, e-mails, files, etc.
Of course, not all cloud apps are bad, but you as the owner and your IT person or company need to at least be AWARE of these applications to determine if they’re a threat to security or a violation of data privacy laws, and simply to keep your confidential information, well, confidential!
Are all Cloud Applications bad & should we limit all access to external applications?
Of course, not all cloud apps are bad, but you as the owner and your IT person or company need to at least be AWARE of these applications to determine if they’re a threat to security or a violation of data privacy laws. Also and simply to keep your confidential information, well, confidential!
For starters, your IT company or person should be constantly monitoring your network for new and unknown software or devices. This can (and should!) be incorporated into routine vulnerability testing. If you’re not sure this is being done now, find out. As Intel founder Andy Grove once said, “Only the paranoid survive.”
How will I know how secure or in danger of data leaks my company is?
You won’t know ever fully know for sure until an independent IT Support Provider does a detailed assessment for you!
However you can establish what applications are being used, you can set your company firewall to block applications you DON’T want employees to access with company data and devices, and allow those that are company-approved.
Also, make sure you catalogue these sites somewhere by user with the login information for that person.
If an employee leaves your organization or is fired, they may remember what the username and password are to these cloud applications and could use them to harm your organization or steal data to sell or give to a competitor.
Don’t put yourself at risk! If you want to learn more or would like a free IT Security Assessment with us to determine how secure & safe you are from the threats posed by possible data leaks, please click at the link and we will book you in for this complimentary 1 hour assessment with one of our IT Consultants.