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The EFSS Market is Heating Up - Here are Top Five Predictions on EFSS Trends that will Drive IT Organizations in 2016

Article Written by Chanel Chambers, Director of Product Marketing, Citrix

Top EFSS Predictions for 2016


1.     The increasing importance of data sovereignty
Enterprises today face increasing challenges meeting the various compliance and regulatory requirements applicable to them. This burden is significantly increased if the enterprise has operations in various geographies or across different verticals. For instance, an e-commerce vendor with global customers' needs to comply with data privacy and disclosure mandates such as the EU Data protection directive, California privacy laws and PCI-DSS. Moreover, as a response to the economic crises, more regulatory and compliance mandates are expected as governments and regulatory bodies shore up requirements in an attempt to prevent future incidents. Additionally, employee mobility, work shifting and BYO devices are putting pressure on IT organizations, along with the need to leverage existing investments, protect intellectual property and meet regulatory compliance requirements.

With this growing global workforce, comes the need to collaborate and share data with other employees, 3rd parties, customers, partners; and the limitations of currently deployed consumer-style file sharing solutions further adds to the complexity. Consumer-style file sharing usage poses serious risks for the enterprise with data loss, violation of regulatory rules, and places data outside of IT control. Yet along with the benefits that cloud computing offers as a new way of delivering computing resources instantly, on-demand and inexpensively, likewise, we envision governments will continue seeking cloud-solutions as a way to help meet compliance requirements.

2.     The demand for hybrid solutions
There's no question that cloud computing has revolutionized the industry, capturing the attention of business and IT leaders, and causing them to reevaluate their IT strategies. Yet with flexible cloud services solutions, organizations can now select which applications and usage scenarios fit best in their private cloud, and which fit best in a public cloud, enabling them to flex, grow and transform to meet the demands of the modern workplace. Hybrid clouds combine the benefits of building private and public clouds as well as leveraging existing IT infrastructure to cut costs, maximize value and modernize the way IT services are delivered.

Here at Citrix, we see cloud services solutions as a way to enable organizations to ensure the best security, performance and reliability whether workloads run in the datacenter or in an external cloud. By allowing IT to deliver every application workload at scale and with simplicity, your organization can capitalize on all of the benefits that cloud computing has to offer. No matter whether the apps and data live on-premises or off-premises, your users will still get the same great experience.

3.     The maturation of tools for responsible collaboration
We anticipate that 2016 will be a big year for enabling document workflows to enhance collaboration. Enterprises are already seeking a single solution that goes beyond addressing their mobility needs. Yet they are also looking for a single solution to help drive workflows, such as approval chains, and enhances collaboration. Enterprises are seeking a collaborative workspace where anyone can securely exchange, track, edit and e-sign content, making it fast, easy and a secure way to obtain electronic signatures on important documents - all from one interface.

Additionally, work teams increasingly span organizations and third parties play a greater role in business, including partners, suppliers, agencies, outsourcing providers and contractors. This creates the need for people to be able to share files easily with anyone inside or outside the organization-without exposing the enterprise network to risk. A complete file sharing and sync service for the enterprise should provide the ability to securely access and share files, including file shares inside the network, with anyone, anywhere. In turn, IT organizations desire the ability to allow their employees-including trusted third parties-to access and share files from anywhere. Yet granular access controls and security policies, including device security policies, must also be defined for both employees and third-party users through the same service. Key capabilities include the ability to require a log-in with defined password complexity for each user account, restrict the number of downloads available to a given user, restrict upload and download permissions for users added to team folders, and expire links to files whenever desired.

4.     The need for a complete solution for document-centric workflows
IT managers are looking for a single solution that will allow them to enable workflows and enhance collaboration for their organization. For these IT managers, being able to provide employees a collaborative workspace where anyone can securely exchange, track, edit and e-sign content through a single interface we feel is going to be critical in the coming year. For enterprises in particular, this will be important, as they are aren't just looking for a single solution that goes beyond addressing mobility needs, but also supports requirements that drive workflows, such as approval chains and the trend towards enterprise "home drives."

5.     The perpetual requirement for total security
Enterprises, especially those in highly regulated industries, need to be able to control file sharing based on the content inside the files themselves to enforce sharing restrictions per company policies. As such, IT organizations are looking for complete solutions that can be fully integrated with existing security infrastructure and policies. Additionally, these IT organizations are also looking to enforce data security policies for sensitive and confidential data. By integrating EFSS solutions with existing DLP (data loss prevention) systems, will allow companies to restrict document sharing based on the file's DLP classification. As such, it is important that these EFSS solutions integrate easily with popular DLP systems. Soon after we introduced ShareFile Enterprise with StorageZones, for example, our partners Digital Guardian and Code Green Networks developed solutions to mitigate the risk of data leakage by leveraging ShareFile APIs to move or revoke access to files that contained sensitive information. But if your security team had already standardized on a different on-premises security suite, you had either to manage two sets of DLP policies or accept the risk of sensitive data going out via ShareFile. Documents stored in your on-premises StorageZone can be examined by any third-party DLP security suite that supports ICAP, a standard network protocol for inline content scanning. Sharing and access privileges can then be adjusted based on the results of the DLP scan and your preferences for how strictly you want to control access.

Additionally, data security is top of mind for IT departments and often the key reason our customers choose our EFSS solution. Nowhere is this topic more relevant today than in discussions involving enterprise mobility and data sharing. Our file sync-and-share solution for the enterprise makes it easy to exchange information with third parties-sometimes too easy. Users should not be allowed to share files broadly when they contain sensitive information like credit card numbers, personally identifying information or intellectual property. For health care organizations, limiting the spread of protected health information (PHI) is the core requirement for HIPAA compliance. For premise-based systems like corporate e-mail and web proxy servers, outbound information can be checked at the network edge and the egress of sensitive data, accidental or intentional, can be prevented. But when you send a file as a hyperlink instead of an attachment, the existing systems are bypassed and your security team loses visibility into what is leaving the network.


About the Author

Chanel Chambers - Director of Product Marketing

Chanel Chambers joined Citrix in 2015 to grow the ShareFile Enterprise business.

Prior to Citrix, she held multiple roles in marketing and sales at Microsoft, where she helped to drive the launch of Windows 7 worldwide, and was responsible for corporate revenue and deployment metrics for the Windows business in the United States.

Chambers holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Oberlin College, a Master of Science degree from North Carolina State University, and a Master of Business Administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.


Published Wednesday, February 03, 2016 8:17 AM by David Marshall
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