One of the primary reasons that shadow IT has spun so far out of control is that end users need to be able to share files using their mobile computing devices. In the absence of any service from the internal IT organization to do that, most of them started using various cloud computing services to accomplish that task with or without the consent of the internal IT organization.
Since then, storage vendors such as Commvault have helped internal IT organizations close that gap by providing file synchronization and collaboration software as an extension of the file systems they provide. Today, Commvault extended those capabilities via the delivery of Edge Drive, which allows end users to create their own virtual cloud to share files with one another.
Steve Luong, senior manager for product marketing at Commvault, says that as an extension of Commvault File Sharing, the existence of Edge Drive means that IT organizations can better serve the needs of their end users while continuing to provide a consistent set of data protection policies and procedures across all the endpoints used in the enterprise.
In contrast, shadow IT services invoked in the cloud mean organizations using those services not only don’t have much control over those files, Luong says they are almost by definition going to be out of compliance with any number of regulations.
While implementing a file sharing service may seem like the IT equivalent of trying to close the proverbial barn door after the horse has bolted, the reality of the situation is that it’s only a matter of time before compliance auditors force most organizations back toward some form of centralized control over file sharing. The only real question is how to go about doing that in a way that end users actually want to come back to the barn of their own accord, so to speak, versus being dragged back kicking and neighing all the way.