Defining Data Access Policies in the Web 2.0 Era

Michael Vizard
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Defining IT Policies in the Web 2.0 Era

Companies are starting to see the business value of Web 2.0 applications and mobile computing devices.

Productivity almost always trumps security. That was the case when the first PCs were brought into the enterprise, and it's even truer as we watch wave after wave of mobile computing devices come into the enterprise.

The challenge this creates is finding a rational approach to balancing productivity and data security in this new age of mobile computing. A new survey of 1,303 end users and 1,309 IT decision makers from Cisco finds that most employees are deliberately ignoring company policies, as they apply to social media and mobile computing, to enhance their productivity.

That approach may prove to be expedient at the moment, but it's probably only a matter of time before a major security breach happens.

Chris Kozup, Cisco director of mobility solutions, says the study clearly shows that businesses of all sizes need to reconsider their data policies. Clearly, banning social media and mobile computing devices isn't practical. On the other end of the spectrum, ignoring the existence of social media and mobile computing devices is a recipe for disaster.

The good news is that the survey shows that IT organizations are starting to see the business value of social media and mobile computing. Right now, most of the focus of the IT department seems to be focused on policies as they apply to social media applications, as opposed to the mobile computing devices themselves.

And just to put some additional imperatives around this issue, the complexity of managing IT policies in the age of Web 2.0 applications is only going to get even tougher as more video finds its way first onto social networks and mobile computing devices, and then on to the corporate network.

So if you think there's a lot of sensitive data flying around the Web today, just wait until people are freely sharing their thoughts and data via video. And with all the new mobile computing devices on the market for the holidays, that issue will be coming to a head much sooner than you think.

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