File sharing is an integral component of business operations, enabling collaboration among team members and allowing users to access the information they need to do their jobs. But without proper protection methods in place, insecure file transfers can jeopardize an organization’s data integrity.
For large companies that handle sensitive data (e.g., personal, financial, and health information), failing to protect data can have severe consequences, including violations, fines, and loss of business integrity.
Potential breaches can be costly, both financially and in the damage done to the organization’s reputation. The highest average data breach costs are attributed to businesses with 10,000–25,000 employees, adding up to over $5.5 million in 2021.
In this article, we’ll explain the importance of enterprise-grade file sharing services and how solutions like WinZip® Enterprise provide comprehensive data protection no matter where and how your files are shared.
What Is Enterprise File Sharing?
Any computer-savvy user can easily attach a document to an email or upload documents to a public folder to share. While these processes are familiar and effective for getting your file to the right recipient, they aren’t secure enough for important business activities.
Consumer-grade file sharing platforms (e.g., personal Dropbox or Google Drive accounts) do not offer the same level of protection as enterprise file sharing solutions.
Most public, server-based transfer services employ File Transfer Protocol (FTP). This file sharing method is easy to use, but its simplicity comes at the cost of a lack of security controls and visibility into file transfer processes.
For example, FTP does not use encryption, instead relying on clear-text usernames and passwords to authenticate transfers.
Enterprise file sharing tools, on the other hand, offer control, security, and customization features that you typically don’t find in consumer-grade alternatives.
Enterprise file sharing tools typically include the following features:
Advanced encryption capabilities, protecting data in transit and at rest with military-grade Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS) 140-2 and Advanced Encryption Standards (AES).
Adherence to compliance requirements, including the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS), and General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
Integration with and customizable control access to leading storage providers, message platforms and other services.
Enhanced file transfer and processing controls, such as the ability to split files for faster, more efficient sharing.
Automated tasks to streamline workflows, such as off-hours batch file transfers, duplicate file detection, and audit log reporting.
Remote wipe for mobile security, which removes data from an endpoint device that has been compromised.
Another feature of business file sharing is tracking. Every time a file is moved, edited, or deleted, that action is recorded by the system. Using this record, businesses can review activity to pinpoint exactly who opened a document, and from where.
If there is an insider attack, the time and access point are easy to determine, potentially saving the company money and minimizing damage.
How Can You Securely Manage Sensitive Data with Enterprise File Sharing?
Cyberattacks have become commonplace: On average, there are over 1,200 data breaches per year. To safely manage and move massive amounts of data, many businesses are turning to enterprise file sharing. Sensitive data falls under two broad categories: regulated data and unregulated data.
Regulated data is the most straightforward type of sensitive data. It includes information that must always stay confidential, such as Social Security numbers, credit card information, and protected health data.
Unregulated data, however, may be lurking in documents or files that do not appear sensitive at face value.
For example, documents such as customer surveys can contain sensitive information that must be protected. If a customer provides only their first and last name, it may not identify them outright, since there may be multiple people with the same name. However, add in a phone number, email, or home address, and this information suddenly becomes sensitive.
Additional details such as gender or date of birth could also be categorized as sensitive when paired with other identifying data. “Jordan Smith” may be anonymous, but a female named Jordan Smith born on January 1, 2001, is a very specific and easily identifiable individual. Documents containing this level of information must be protected by a robust security solution.
Enterprise-level organizations collect and generate vast amounts of unregulated data. Examples include:
Internal operations documents
Marketing and/or sales tactics
In other words, allowing this data to be shared without securing it first can be extremely risky.
Enable Secure Business File Sharing with WinZip Enterprise
WinZip Enterprise secures the file sharing process for all company users from start to finish. In just a few steps, you can encrypt files, upload them, and share them with any desired parties.
When files need to be accessible to more than one party, they are typically hosted in the cloud for easy access. WinZip Enterprise can be configured to integrate with leading enterprise-level cloud storage providers, including SharePoint, OneDrive, and Dropbox.
Files being shared between two individuals can be easily enabled via email, instant messaging, and even social media. Using expiration-enabled links, users can share files across instant message and social platforms such as Microsoft Teams, Slack, Google Hangouts, and Twitter.
With WinZip Enterprise, secure file sharing via email is enabled only through Outlook, ensuring that users cannot send files through unapproved and potentially less secure email platforms.
When documents are shared, updated, and shared again, multiple outdated copies tend to float around in your system. WinZip Enterprise identifies and deletes duplicate files, eliminating redundancies and preventing issues caused by accessing out-of-date documents.
Maintaining a single copy of each file also drastically reduces the necessary storage space and increases processing speed.
It’s essential for businesses to be able to customize and scale their file sharing solutions according to their needs. From user interfaces to automated backups to integrating with current systems, molding a file sharing system to your specific requirements minimizes downtime and disruptions. This helps prevent productivity decline while allowing you to maintain business continuity.
To this end, WinZip Enterprise gives IT teams the ability to disable unnecessary features, hiding them from the end user view and eliminating unnecessary distractions. IT administrators can also scale the solution up or down to handle the company’s needs appropriately.
There are plenty of benefits for end users, too. The interface of WinZip Enterprise is easy to navigate, which increases adoption speed while reducing frustration and errors.
WinZip features top-tier AES encryption methods that comply with all major standards, including FIPS 140-2 and FIPS 197, ensuring that your information is delivered safe and intact.
Additional features, such as password protection for encrypted file deletion, keep important information from being accidentally or maliciously erased.
WinZip Enterprise is a comprehensive solution for fast, easy, and secure business file sharing. Request a free Proof of Concept to learn more.