Moving beyond the scripts and programs you lovingly set up to carry your data around can be scary but, like pushing a baby bird out of the nest, it eventually becomes necessary. Instead of sending data “in the clear,” constantly fixing scripts, or mad dashes to pull together audit logs, switch to a secure file transfer method that handles the tricky stuff for you.
You may have examined several alternatives to your current file transfer process and decided that managed file transfer (MFT) is the one for you. Or maybe you’re still debating between some other method and MFT – either way, read on to discover why MFT benefits organizations more than any other enterprise file transfer alternatives available.
What is Managed File Transfer?
The heart of managed file transfer (MFT) is secure data movement. MFT uses file transfer protocols (like HTTPS or SFTP) and encryption standards to meet all aspects of inbound and outbound file transfers. By automating, centralizing, and streamlining file transfers, managed file transfer software solutions give organizations a leg up over other file transfer methods and simplify all sorts of data movement.
Related Reading: What is Managed File Transfer (MFT)?
What Are the Benefits of MFT?
Organizations in every industry find value in enterprise file transfer options like MFT. While most MFT benefits fit all industries and organizations, others can be niche to certain compliance requirements, or even needs specific to just your company.
1. Better Cybersecurity
Protecting data is paramount to every organization. Whether it’s user data, credit card information, or sensitive proprietary material, organizations have an incentive to keep that information in the right hands.
Managed file transfer can beef up an organization’s cybersecurity by securing file transfers inside and outside the organization. But MFT goes beyond sending files between users and systems securely: the many features and modules most software solutions include can be used to automate processes, ensure secure connections, track file transfer activity (including user access), and more.
Related Reading: Top Data Breaches of 2019: How You Can Minimize Your Risks
2. Strong Encryption
Managed file transfer solutions can easily scale to meet any organization’s file transfer needs, whether that’s a couple dozen a week or a few thousand a day – and more. MFT encrypts and compresses your file transfers in transit and at rest with several industry standard technologies technologies for securing data, including Open PGP, AES, SSL, and SSH.
3. Improved File Transfers
Forget custom scripts, desktop applications, and failed file transfers. With the right MFT software, you can leave those things in the past: create, test, and automate file transfers from one easy-to-use interface.
If your organization processes a large amount of files every day, simplify things with automation (to keep things moving) and audit logs (to see what’s going on). A managed file transfer solution should help you track all the files moving through the system, along with who’s editing, viewing, and sending them. Some even provide notifications of failed file transfers, and auto-retries, so you don’t have to spend time troubleshooting why files didn’t make it to the destination.
For organizations that need to send large files securely, MFT can be the answer too. Some MFT solutions include a file transfer acceleration protocol and others will let you attach files of any size to an email. The software willsend the recipient a secure link to the data, so they can download the message and files – and you can track who is viewing that information and how many times it’s downloaded.
4. Lower Costs
Free vs. Paid
Free and open source file sharing solutions fit all budgets – at least initially. While they’re popular and may get the job done, they’re not necessarily the most secure and don’t include the features that make your day-to-day job responsibilities easier: automation, intuitive interfaces, and simplified workflows.
And while free software saves you money up front, the potential cost of a data breach rarely fits your budget. Avoid a costly debacle by using a secure solution from the beginning.
Related Reading: Why Choose Managed File Transfer over Free File Sharing Methods?
Some MFT software vendors give you a variety deployment options, each with different price tags that can fit your IT budget – whatever it may be:
- Self-hosted on premise, which has the most freedom but requires staff and infrastructure, alongside time for maintenance and upgrades.
- Self-hosted in the cloud, which allows you to use a cloud service provider rather than on-site servers so you can quickly increase and decrease server space.
- Hybrid solutions, which combine the flexibility of the cloud and the freedom of internal servers.
- SaaS solutions, which offer lower up-front costs and less (or no) time spent by your staff handling downtime for maintenance or updates.
5. Easy to Meet Compliance Requirements
Encrypting your file transfers is essential for compliance with existing and emerging privacy laws, industry-specific compliance requirements, and regulations meant to protect personal information in high-risk industries like healthcare and retail.
Beyond encryption, however, MFT gives organizations the additional benefit of built-in monitoring, tracking, and auditing. Easily pull reports on access and data movement as PDF and CSV files with just a few mouse clicks.
MFT solutions give your organizations countless ways – if not more – to implement and use the software. MFT is extremely customizable, whether that’s:
- How you deploy the solution (see #4, above),
- What platform you use,
- How you transfer files (ad-hoc, in bulk, etc.),
- What file formats you – or your trading partners – use,
- Where you access your MFT solution from,
- How you collaborate with your colleagues and clients,
- And more!
While MFT may securely transfer data for every company that uses it, each company can have a wholly unique setup.
Control every aspect of your file transfers from one centralized location. Bring your encryption, automation, tracking, and auditing together under one roof with an MFT solution and manage it from a central admin interface.
Discover Why Investing in MFT Can Boost Your Business
Finding the right enterprise file transfer solution for your organization isn’t an easy process. With all the details to consider, choosing a vendor can be complex. Learn more about MFT and discover how to select the best software for your organization with this Buyer’s Guide.