Endpoint Security: Is Your Data Protected?

25 03 2010

In a recent study by the Ponemon Institute, “State of the Endpoint,” IT security and IT operations practitioners were surveyed to determine if they believe the endpoint is more or less secure today. Of those surveyed, some of the reasons for endpoint vulnerability included:

  • Employees connecting their own computing devices, such as laptops and PDAs to the organization’s network or enterprise system
  • The complexity of endpoint management systems – on average, 3.7 software agents are installed on each endpoint to manage security
  • A lack of skill or knowledgeable personnel
  • The misalignment of IT and business objectives
  • Difficulty integrating multiple technologies

41 percent of respondents do not believe their organizations are proactive in managing privacy and data protection risks.

Let’s go back to the misalignment of IT and business objectives as well as the difficulty of integrating multiple technologies. Multiple and disparate technologies within an IT infrastructure lead to complexity. It also leads to multiple points of failure and delays in supplying the business with the information it needs to competitively operate.

Additionally, unnecessary complexity leads to more money spent on IT. Granted, there are always investments made in new technology that the business needs to stay current and compete. The problem is that the money available to IT is limited. The money spent on operating a complex environment depletes the budget for future technologies.

The effort required by IT to maintain disparate technologies requires it to focus resources on the day-to-day instead of preparing for the evolving needs of the business.

So how do you meet these challenges?

Platform/Vendor/Application-independent technology enables you to integrate multiple systems to provide end-to-end visibility of your endpoint security from infrastructure to people. Whether, it’s in the data center or an application used by an employee, an integrated platform provides the necessary protocols, processes and security to ensure your data is protected.

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Why move to Managed File Transfer when FTP works for me today?

15 12 2009

This is a question often heard in the market and on the surface it looks pretty straightforward.  If it’s not broke, don’t fix it!

When you dive deeper into the purpose of a file transfer operation a bigger picture becomes clear.

Is the only purpose of a file transfer to get isolated data from point A to point B?  Or perhaps, is the purpose part of a much bigger business process impacting the success of the company?

All data movement should be looked at as being part of something bigger than itself.  There is no isolated movement of data in an organization.  Even backups are the final step in a business process ensuring recoverability.  The process of moving data from the creating application to the next application that requires it until the business at hand is complete and the data rests must be managed.  It must be part of an integrated process that is secured, timely, guaranteed, optimized, automated, auditable, and visible to the organization.  The success of the business depends on it.

While products such as FTP provide the ability to move a single file from point A to point B, only a true managed file transfer solution can offer the necessary means to guarantee the data is managed as part of a bigger picture directly related to the business.

In addition to getting the data from point A to point B in a secure manner, a managed file transfer product should offer:

  • Guaranteed delivery
  • Integration to pre and post processing of the data transfer operation providing streamlined workflow execution
  • Event triggered file transfer operations ensuring timely and automated execution
  • Logic based decision making during data transfer operations
  • Customized logging to satisfy any internal or external audit requirements
  • Central visibility to data movement
  • Bulk and wildcard file transfers optimizing implementations and operations
  • A portable application means faster on boarding regardless of platform

When it comes down to the big picture when looking at file transfer the answer becomes clear.  Staying with a product like FTP because it is ‘not broken’ means missing the importance of data movement as an integral part of your business process impacting your success.