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@CloudExpo Authors: Philippe Abdoulaye, Liz McMillan, Maria C. Horton, Tim Hinds, Elizabeth White

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Cloud-Based File Sharing – What Challenges Does it Bring to the Enterprise?

According to Gartner, Inc., “By 2016, 20 percent of CIOs in regulated industries will lose their jobs for failing to implement the discipline of information governance successfully.”¹ Employees have become accustomed to having unlimited access to the data they desire by bringing their own devices into the workplace. More data is being stored in the cloud, allowing access to it anytime from anywhere and the possibility of exposing sensitive corporate information is just one of the dangers of cloud-based file sharing. Axway (NYSE Euronext: AXW.PA), announced today it sponsored a survey completed by IDG Research Services that examines what IT managers are doing in relation to managing cloud-based file sharing services.

IT departments are making an attempt to manage policies related to cloud-based file sharing tools, but their efforts are often ignored according to the survey’s results. Of the 131 IT managers that responded, 54 percent said they had a policy requiring cloud-based file-sharing tools (excluding email) to be vetted and approved by IT before employees could use them. Some 30 percent said they had no such policy regarding the use of these tools. Surprisingly however, nearly four out of five respondents admitted that employees fairly frequently use unauthorized cloud-based file-sharing tools, regardless of any existing policies.

John Thielens, Chief Security Officer at Axway said, “I would speculate it’s likely closer to five out of five employees, including executives, that are fairly frequently using unauthorized cloud-based file sharing tools. Axway sees the problem all the time, and it’s not limited to rank-and-file employees. It is important for companies to constantly have the ability to govern the flow of data while employees are using cloud-based file sharing tools.”

The survey reveals that the most important features to IT Managers and departments for cloud-based file sharing products are the:

  • ability to enforce security and compliance policies and controls
  • ability to encrypt shared files
  • ease of use and user adoption

IT Managers said the most prevalent concerns with cloud-based file sharing products are:

  • sensitive data leaks and data loss
  • loss due to theft
  • loss of control of the data itself

When considering products to help provide governance around file sharing, IT Managers stated the ability to cover both email and cloud-based file sharing as the most important feature. Just under one half of the respondents stated they were applying the same policies and controls to both email and cloud-based file sharing. Axway recommends this approach as a best practice. “The ability to apply common security policies to both email and file sharing is the most efficient and effective approach,” said Mike Dayton, senior vice president, Axway Security Solutions Group.

Axway’s DropZone™ product meets both the revealed criteria. DropZone is a secure enterprise-level file-sharing application that is easy on users and IT administrators. It integrates with MailGate SC, Axway’s secure email application, so IT can manage both email and file sharing from the same platform, and allow users access from their preferred mobile device.

Download the whitepaper: “Cloud-Based File Sharing Challenges the Enterprise

For more information on Axway’s security solutions:

Follow Axway on Twitter: @Axway

Read more on the Axway blog:

¹Gartner Press Release, “Gartner Says Master Data Management Is Critical to Achieving Effective Information Governance.” January 19, 2012.

About Axway

Axway (NYSE Euronext: AXW.PA), a market leader in governing the flow of data, is a global software company with more than 11,000 public- and private-sector customers in 100 countries. For more than a decade, Axway has empowered leading organizations around the world with proven solutions that help manage business-critical interactions through the exchange of data flowing across the enterprise, among B2B communities, cloud and mobile devices. Our award-winning solutions span business-to-business integration, managed file transfer, API and identity management, and email security– offered on premise and in the Cloud with professional and managed services.

Axway is registered in France with headquarters in the United States and offices in 22 countries. More information is available at

About Axway 5 Suite

Axway 5 Suite offers control and optimization of the flow of data through integration, visibility, policy, security and reliability to govern business-to-business interactions, communities, systems and data types — within and beyond the enterprise edge.

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