Five Ways to Ensure Remote Workers Are Sharing and Accessing Files Securely

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Empower employees with the right tools

When left to their own devices, employees are likely to choose more familiar, less secure options (like USB drives and personal email) for managing confidential data and files. The situation gets worse when employees access sensitive files on the road or at home. For the sake of security, it is critical to provide employee-friendly technology that promotes productivity – including mobile applications that integrate with enterprise systems that can provide proper auditing, logging and security controls transparently in the background without changing the habits of the user. For employees just looking to access files, organizations can deploy mobile access tools that allow users to view information stored on the protected corporate network – without having to copy and save the information to their mobile device. Employees will do whatever they need to remain productive, and if organizations fail to provide tools that fit into the daily routines of their staff, employees will find an unsecure workaround for accessing and sharing the files they need.

Security is a hot button issue for businesses of all sizes and across every industry. IT administrators are attempting to plug leaks, update systems, and plan ahead for new threats – hackers, viruses, and even the NSA make the short list of priorities. Unfortunately, this often leads IT to overlook possible threats posed by internal forces, especially those caused by accidental incidents, particularly related to securing and sharing data outside the business' network.

The number of remote workers in the U.S. increased by more than 80 percent from 2005 to 2012, and it's predicted that the number of telecommuters will increase to 3.9 million by 2016, a 21 percent jump from the current level, according to Global Workplace Analytics. A second study by Globalscape found that more than 60 percent of employees knowingly take home confidential data, storing it on insecure devices and accounts – 75 percent believing IT approves of their behavior.

The increase in organizations encouraging or offering telecommuting programs demonstrates a strong, immediate need for secure remote access and file-sharing strategies for the enterprise. Here are five ways businesses can implement and support a secure remote work force, as identified by James Bindseil, president and CEO of GlobalSCAPE, Inc.


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