How Shadow IT Could Be Putting Your Organization At Risk

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While the cloud is still a relatively recent addition to the modern workplace, experts agree that modern companies and organizations are dealing with a completely different cloud economy. Today, cloud computing is used by almost every different of industry imagining, and every department within these various companies, from Marketing and Sales to IT. Then, of course, there are the unapproved cloud-based applications that many groups and individuals may use as a natural step in a world that is increasingly reliant on mobile cloud services. Unfortunately, these unapproved services, which industry experts are calling Shadow IT, can potentially put corporate information and even entire businesses at risk. For this reason, a number of companies are hiring cloud broker services to help them manage their data and storage systems. But what are cloud broker services, and how can they help?

First, consider the extent of Shadow IT: the Ponemon Institute reports that around 50% of cloud services are deployed by departments other than corporate IT on average. Moreover, around 44% of corporate data stored in cloud environments is not managed or controlled by the IT department. As applications and cloud usage increases, studies show that only 8% of companies know the scope of Shadow IT within their organization; 72% say they don’t know how severe the problem is, but would like to know more. And for good reason: without proper management, Shadow IT can put companies at risk of insecure or non-compliant data handling and storage practices, or simply leave data without proper security. In the past few years, at least one industry study found that 34% of its users of cloud-based file sharing applications have uploaded sensitive information, including personally identifiable information (PII) or even payment card information.

But what can businesses do about this persistent problem? Often, the answer is to hire cloud broker services. Specializing in security, visibility, policy enforcement and service selection, cloud broker services can help businesses and government agencies select the right cloud-based systems, assess the security of their current operations, uncover the extent of Shadow IT and help reduce the number of cloud applications at work in an organization. Do you need cloud broker services to help promote the security of your organization? Contact a local practice today to find out.

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