You might have heard that London Heathrow Airport has been recently fined with £120,000 ($156,000 USD) for data protection failings. The thumb drive which was found by a citizen on the street in West London, contained personal data of 10 ordinary people and 50 Heathrow aviation security personnel. Imagine how high the penalty could have been if the allegations that the thumb drive had also contained sensitive national security documents had been proven.
The cost of your lost or stolen thumb drive can vary depending on how much sensitive data there is and who gains access to it. This cost can be further multiplied by the value of your image and identity.
No doubt, thumb drives are very useful tools. Employees often use them to back up their documents and share files with colleagues, especially when these files are too large or sensitive to be shared via email. However, there are thousands of cases where use, or, better say, misuse of thumb drives put companies into crisis situations.
While we make sure that our devices are protected by antivirus software, passwords and encryption, data in our thumb drives remains vulnerable. Although the market offers a variety of thumb drives with native security features such as authentication and encryption, most of the time people end up buying simple and inexpensive ones. While companies are trying to build firewalls around their data, the users unintentionally punch holes in them.
Replace the thumb drive with CCP?
Since 2017, Singapore public servants have been prohibited to use unauthorised USB drives to ensure data security. To replace the functionalities of thumb drives, such as large file sharing and collaborating with colleagues, several agencies decided to adopt content collaboration platforms (CCP) (formerly known as Enterprise File Sync & Share (EFSS) solutions).
According to Gartner: “By 2022, 50% of large and midsize organisations in mature regions will use content collaboration platforms to implement document workflow automation, in addition to productivity and collaboration.” You can consider enabling your team with a CCP as well, protecting your company’s data while enhancing productivity.
Benefits of Content Collaboration Platforms
Content collaboration platforms are not only great tools for collaborating within organisations but also for sharing large files with third parties. They sync your data for backup, automate recovery and free up space on local devices.
Content collaboration platforms make documents available and accessible to all authorised users at any time across company’s offices and branches. Apart from eliminating the need for thumb drives, CCPs are replacing network shares and file transfer servers, modernising IT infrastructure and functionality. They simplify content management and possess a wide range of admin features.
How About Security?
Whether you allow employees to continue using thumb drives or enable them with a secure CCP is your decision. Each organisation is unique, and you definitely know yours better than others do.
If you decide to use a secure content collaboration platform, you can choose the deployment options depending on your company’s security requirements. You can leverage the public clouds, deploy the CCP solution on your internal environment, or for higher security situations, you can use Air Gap architecture where public and private networks are isolated by a Data Diode or SFTP.
Secure content collaboration platforms include features like encryption, link expiration date, link cancellation or two factor authentication (2FA), leveraging one-time-password (OTP) to make sure that file sharing is secure and that the file is shared with the correct person.
Go for it!
Like we’ve said before, every organisation is unique, and the needs of each organisation might be different. However, all organisations have one thing in common – they all value their data and know that data is too expensive to lose. If you prefer to continue using thumb drives to share large files to collaborate, make sure you use the encrypted and password-protected ones. If you decide to start using content collaboration platforms, and if you’re wondering whether it’s worth the investment, we’re always here to answer your questions.