In today’s business world, the proliferation of hackers and cybercriminals has made it imperative that companies implement the strongest possible security for their digital files. These people, a devious bunch, would want to gain access to your records, documents and other files, often for nefarious purposes.
Banks, law firms, government agencies, and other organizations maintain massive file storage out of necessity. It’s far too easy for external entities to gain access to confidential and proprietary information to which they have no claim, then to share it with the wrong people, post it online or worse.
Still, there are many professionals across Canada and around the world who routinely attach and send confidential documents via their email accounts, download files to their USB drives or save confidential documents to company public drives. In many cases, employees share and collaborate on highly sensitive documents as they make their way to desktop to mobile device and who knows where.
In recent years, company leaders have become savvy about the need for file storage that’s safe, secure and keeps out the bad guys. As a result, many options have become available for facilitating this need, such as FutureVault, a Toronto company co-founded by longtime business leader G. Scott Paterson. The company, whose Digital Collaborative Vault allows companies like banks, credit unions, professional services firms, and others to safely share, organize and store all types of personal, financial and legal documents from any device, has been providing this service for a range of clients since 2013.
There are lots of products and services out there for document storage. One factor that’s forced companies to rethink their security measures, though, is the widespread proliferation of mobile devices, many of which are company-issued, that by themselves can have some vulnerability.
“Employees no longer work solely from desktop PCs, connected in an office environment,” writes entrepreneur John Rampton. “Instead, businesses now issue mobile devices to employees, which they then carry with them almost everywhere they go. Businesses must invest in technology to keep those devices safe within a network environment, as well as train employees to use work-connected smartphones and tablets responsibly. By setting up remote wipe capabilities and turning on the ‘find my device’ GPS feature on each smartphone and tablet, businesses can ensure that if a piece of equipment is misplaced, its data will remain safe from prying eyes.”
And then there’s the cloud, which many companies seem to use today. It’s a convenient way to store documents and other files so they don’t use too much valuable space on your hard drive, plus it’s simple to download them again when you need them. But is it safe?
“The cloud has quickly become one of the most common ways people and businesses store and send files, images, documents and more,” according to Zak Goldberg, a writer on law, fintech and business economics. “While it provides a convenient way to do so, there are still some security issues and struggles to put in place any laws or regulation over use of the service. Firstly, it is important to read the user agreement, as this should provide all the information and reassurance that it has efficient security controls in place.”
So let’s say you decide to bypass the cloud and external storage and commit to an external storage solution, like G. Scott Paterson’s Digital Collaborative Vault or one of the many others providers that can help you from outside your company. What exactly do you need to do before signing on the dotted line?
On the SecureDocs website, Cassity Ming advises that, “When seeking a way to safely store and share business documents online, look for a solution that offers in-depth security features like strict access control, permission-based user roles, and two factor authentication. This will give you custom control over who can access your files, how they access them, and knowledge into how they are interacting with your business documents- while ensuring that all of your company’s information remains safe should a cyber attack or security breach attempt occur.”