Nasty Security Nightmares
The issue of security versus sharing gets a little bigger each day. Just take a few cases in the last 2 years:
- The Primera Breech: 13,000,000 patient private records exposed with social security numbers, addresses, bank account info
- Morgan Stanley's Insider Attack: 350,000 accounts hacked with transactional data, account info and financial info
- The Bitstamp Cyber Attack: Over 650,000 Bitcoins (that's $5 million dollars!) were siphoned out of accounts on Bitstamp due to malicious cyber attack
In the Internet of Things, everything is connected. And in the age of Bring Your Own Device, those apps and devices are sending valuable data has spawned a new wave of data criminals, risks, infections, and company-toppling security issues. The risk of sharing and the rights to privacy is a major security issue for any company, and you need an enterprise solution that protects you, but at the same time, employees are demanding consumer-friendly features and seamless UX that works with their smartphones. What do we do?
The Risk of Sharing
Let's talk about malware. There are over 30 million new virus strains introduced every year. In 2013 alone, consumers lost a combined total of $2.3 billion to malware attacks. While we need to share content more than ever, sending an insecure communication could mean an access point for all kinds of bad.
There is a risk that the data itself could fall into the wrong hands, but there are also systemic issues. For instance, data integrity could be impacted through data tampering or unsuccessfully wiping away data in the effort to disinfect it. On the supplier side, there are a number of things that can be done to control the issue. Data encryption can help and different data validation methods can be put in place to act as a sort of checks and balances. Access controls are also very important -- data errors happen less frequently when the permission to manipulate the information is limited to a handful of people.
Maintaining confidentiality and data integrity while making sure that information remains secure and accessible is the new standard, and cloud-based solutions are helping make it a reality across the board. "The automation of virtually all business processes and the increasing digital connectedness of the entire value chain create agility, but they also significantly raise cyber security risks and threat levels," explains MIT Technology Review. "Both the value and the volume of data have never been higher, and end points are more vulnerable than ever."
Paranoia Making Communication Harder
Collecting that data represents a trade-off between security and sharing with which employees are both ignorant of and hyper-concerned with. A recent Pew Research study polled people on office surveillance cameras, retail loyalty cards, free social media and auto insurance. Of the people they polled, 17 percent feared any digital tracking and just 4 percent of respondents thought monitoring data acceptable -- despite the fact that many are already in place by different companies. The results show how people are hyper-concerned about privacy.
"In our focus groups, people spoke angrily about the potential negative consequences of data sharing," writes Pew Research. "They reacted negatively to spam and unwanted contacts that occurred after sharing information, they worried about hackers and they expressed particular sensitivities about location data tied to their homes and driving habits." The most unsettling problem reported by participants was that they had no way of knowing who was using their data and why. "Some cited concerns about 'Big Brother' profiling," continued Pew. "Some also voiced suspicions about the motives of the companies and organizations collecting the data, saying they worried companies had ulterior motives for harvesting personal data."
As B2B enterprise software slowly merges with consumer experiences, sharing your content has to be both secure and trusted. Out-of-network communication needs to have the internal hooks and trust to satisfy the security IT standards, as well as the consumer UX to be friendly and easy for the end user to understand basic security protocals.
Secure Sharing Solutions
In turn, many companies are rightfully looking to partner with suppliers that offer the right safeguards. "The thing that they're [integrators] looking for are finding accelerators [to] reducing risk because, more and more, the customers are saying, 'you have to take more of this risk to win my business," explains Brian Hodges, Senior Vice President of Informatica's Worldwide Professional Services. "It's not just about giving the lowest average daily rate," says Hodges. "You have to find a way to lower the risk of [this] overall engagement. It's a way of saying 'we want your best effort.'"
And many companies are upping their games with secure sharing solutions -- but you have to do your research. Enterprise-class security may be a must in today's digital world but not every company is equipped with the secure data sharing solutions your company needs to be a success and solve the security vs sharing paradox.