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Posts Tagged with "MANAGED FILE TRANSFER"

Top Takeaways from the 2017 Cybersecurity Trend Report


Do you ever wish you knew how other businesses are dealing with today’s security threats? The 2017 Cybersecurity Trends Report, recently released by Crowd Research Partners, provides insight into the cybersecurity concerns and priorities of organizations across a wide range of industries.

The report is a comprehensive study revealing current cybersecurity trends in threat management, data protection, cloud security, application security, mobile security, security training and certification, managed security, and more. The 2017 report is based on a survey of more than 1,900 cybersecurity professionals across businesses of all sizes, from those with fewer than 10 employees (7 percent of respondents) to those with over 10,000 (26 percent of respondents). Download the full report here or read on for a few top takeaways.

#1 - Everyone is Worried about Cybersecurity

Security threats are a very real and urgent concern for most companies. Over half (54 percent) of cybersecurity professionals anticipate successful cyberattacks on their organization in the next 12 months. And they aren’t taking that threat lightly. 52 percent are boosting their security budget by an average of 21 percent.

Most professionals are not convinced that they are ready for an attack. 62 percent of respondents were moderately confident to not at all confident in their organization’s overall security posture.

#2 - Lack of Budget is Greatest Barrier to Security

While the majority of organizations are increasing their security budget, finances remain one of the top obstacles to stronger security, with 45 percent of respondents citing lack of budget as a barrier that inhibits the organization from defending against cyber threats.

For this reason, it’s essential that companies spend their money on solutions that give them a solid return on investment. Using free tools and apps where an enterprise-class product is needed can cause a company to fall victim to a cyberattack, while purchasing the most expensive tools on the market can leave you with empty pockets and a long list of features you don’t need.

ROI of MFT calculatorNeed to secure and streamline your file transfers? Maximize your investment with the MFT ROI Calculator.

 

#3 - Internal Threats & Untrained Employees are Biggest Threats

33 percent of cybersecurity professionals are worried about threats coming from within the company. While a malicious employee may hack into sensitive data intentionally, in most cases the more pressing concern is careless or uninformed staff members. A lack of skilled employees tops the list of barriers to both stronger security (45 percent) and to threat management (33 percent).

Whether your insider threats are malicious or careless, solutions with role-based security and auditing are recommended to help mitigate risk of a breach. Role-based security enables organizations to restrict permissions of individual users to only the information and functionality required to do their job, while auditing capabilities provide detailed audit logs of actions taken by each user.

Another top concern is the security of cloud applications, services, and infrastructure. Respondents cited fears including the need to protect against data loss, threats to data privacy, and breaches of confidentiality. To protect sensitive data transferred using a cloud-based solution, experts recommend  verifying that the solution provides end-to-end encryption for protecting files at rest and in transit.

#4 - Encryption is Greatest File Transfer Challenge

The number one concern when it comes to transferring files is security, with 59 percent of survey respondents citing encryption of files as a challenge they face. This is a serious shortcoming given that 67 percent of respondents ranked data encryption as the most effective means for protecting against cybersecurity attacks. It’s critical that any organization transferring files implements a secure managed file transfer solution that streamlines the process of providing various types of encryption like SSL, SSH, AES, and OpenPGP.

Unfortunately, the majority of organizations surveyed are still using inadequate solutions. For example, email is still the most common file transfer method for smaller files, even though unsecured email is both vulnerable to cyberattack and difficult to track for auditing.

Over half of professionals surveyed said that they lack the tools to prove compliance related to transfer of sensitive files. The right enterprise file transfer software simplifies compliance by providing the security features required by major industry regulations, the reports an auditor needs to see, and even tools to help you check if your data transfers are meeting standards.

Learn more about what the 2017 Cybersecurity Trends Report means for your file transfers, or read the full report now.

Download the Cybersecurity Trends Report

cybersecurity trends report


The State of File Transfer Security

file transfer security
The 2017 Cybersecurity Trends Report was recently released by Crowd Research Partners. The report covers many aspects of cybersecurity, such as general security trends, cloud and mobile security, and managed security services. It also looks at how organizations are securing their file transfers, including some common file security pitfalls.

Here’s what the CyberSecurity Trends Report has to say about file transfers.

file transfer concern graphSecurity is the Top File Transfer Concern

When it comes to the challenges businesses face when transferring files, security is at the top of the list, with 59 percent of respondents citing it as a concern. Furthermore, over half of the IT security professionals surveyed said that if their file sharing practices were audited for regulatory compliance, they do not have the tools they need to streamline the process.

Managed file transfer (MFT) is the clear answer for both security and compliance challenges. A good MFT solution will provide a variety of encryption methods and secure protocols to combat modern data security threats. MFT software also includes detailed audit logging capabilities to ensure you can prove your file transfers are compliant in case of an audit.

Securing Customer Data is Critical

Protecting sensitive data is a significant concern for most organizations. Above all, companies are worried about the security of customer data—72 percent of survey respondents cited it as a type of sensitive data they are most concerned about protecting.

types of sensitive data transferred graph

There’s good reason to be careful about customer data. According to Verizon’s latest PCI DSS Compliance Report, 69 percent of consumers would be less inclined to do business with an organization that had suffered a data breach. Customer data security is also essential for maintaining compliance with PCI DSS and other industry standards.

Other types of data that respondents are concerned about protecting include employee data (66 percent), email (54 percent), corporate financial data (46 percent), and health information (33 percent)—important if you need to comply with HIPAA.

A managed file transfer solution can provide end-to-end encryption to protect files at rest and in transit. 67 percent of survey respondents ranked encryption as the most effective means for protecting data.

Too Many Organizations are Using Inadequate File Transfer Methods

Email is still the most common file transfer method for smaller files, used by 63 percent of respondents. This is a serious risk as unsecured email is both vulnerable to cyberattack and difficult to track for auditing purposes. Another 18 percent rely on writing custom scripts, a method that is both time-consuming and prone to error.

file exchange mediums graphFortunately, 49 percent of respondents have implemented managed file transfer software. Managed file transfer streamlines the secure exchange of data and provides organizations with a single point of control for all file transfers. Implementing an MFT solution that provides enterprise-level security features, role-based security, and full audit trails, is the best way to make sure your data transfers stay ahead of constantly evolving security threats.

To learn more, download the full Cybersecurity Trends Report.

cybersecurity trends report

 


No Such Thing as a Free File Transfer, Part 2: Cost-effective Security

With new corporate data breaches in the news seemingly every day, it’s no surprise that security is a top concern for IT professionals. However, file transfers are an area where many companies are still vulnerable. Most file transfers still use FTP, a protocol that comes with inherent risks. It’s especially worrisome that, as TechRepublic points out, FTP is actually becoming more popular again. Other common file transfer solutions, like file sharing apps, come with their own security concerns.

GoAnywhere MFT ROIThis is the second in a series of articles about the ROI of managed file transfer (MFT), the first of which covered time savings. There’s no doubt that data breaches are costly. The 2016 Ponemon Cost of Data Breach Study puts the current cost at $4 million—$158 per record breached. So it’s a no-brainer that a solution to secure your file transfers would bring you a great return on investment.

And yet, when you try to get internal approval for products to help with security, proving the ROI can be difficult. A good security tool is by nature preventative. If you haven’t suffered a breach (or you have and don’t know about it yet), you probably don’t have a way to precisely calculate cost-savings.

Still, your data certainly has value, and you know you have to keep it secure. So how do you know you are protecting your file transfers with the solution that gives you the most bang for your buck? By making sure the software you choose addresses all of the top file transfer security concerns within one solution—no additional purchases or custom scripting required.

A Variety of Secure Protocols

FTP has been proven vulnerable to hacking. For example, 7,000 FTP sites, including an FTP server run by The New York Times, had their credentials circulated in underground forums in 2014. In some cases, hackers used the credentials to upload malicious files.

It’s essential for modern enterprises to turn to more modern and secure file transfer methods, such as:

  • AS2: AS2 generates an "envelope" for the data, allowing it to be sent using digital certifications and encryption.
  • SFTP and FTPS: These secure FTP protocols bring down the risk during data exchange by using a secure channel between computer systems
  • HTTPS: The secure version of HTTP, HTTPS encrypts communications between browser and website.

Which of these methods your company implements may depend on several factors, like your industry compliance requirements or what your trading partners use. Your requirements may also change over time. That’s why the best investment is a versatile managed file transfer solution that can handle any of these protocols and more.   

GoAnywhere MFT ROIProtection against People

When you imagine the security threat to your company, you might conjure up images of hackers working tirelessly to access your systems and use your data for nefarious purposes. The truth is, one of your biggest threats is probably in the office down the hall.

A 2015 study found that internal actors were responsible for 43% of data loss. Half of this is intentional—disgruntled or opportunistic employees, contractors, or suppliers performing deliberate acts of data theft. But half of it is accidental. People like to cut corners, and probably most employees in your company aren’t as concerned about security as you are.

Any file transfer solution with a good ROI has to address the threat coming from within the business.  You want to have role-based security options that limit each user to the servers and the functions of managed file transfer that they absolutely need to use. Detailed audit logs mean you always know who is doing what with the solution.

Ensure Compliance

In many industries, inadequate security practices don’t just put your own corporate data at risk, they can endanger highly sensitive information like credit card numbers and health records. For this reason, a number of regulations exist to protect personal data. A few of the most common are PCI DSS, Sarbanes-Oxley, and HIPAA, but your industry may have others.

A 2011 study found that while the cost of compliance averaged more than $3.5 million, the estimated cost of failing to comply was $9.4 million, showing that a solution that can help you comply with regulations has a clear ROI. In the case of file transfers, your MFT platform should have a number of encryption methods available to protect sensitive data including SSL, SSH, AES, and Open PGP encryption. Audit trails should also be in place to track file transfer activity so you can easily determine what files are being sent, what time they are sent, and who the sender and receiver are.

Modernization and Scalability

Once you go to the effort of choosing a file transfer solution that will protect your company, convince management of its necessity, and implement the software, the last thing you want to have to do is  change it two years down the road because your company is bigger, has more compliance requirements, or new trading partners.

A managed file transfer platform from an established, reliable software provider will make sure you stay updated with the features necessary to combat current security threats. Furthermore, if your volume of file transfers increases, you won’t need to invest in a new tool to handle the workload.

Bonus: Increased Productivity

If your managed file transfer solution can prevent a data breach, that alone makes it worth the investment. But what if it could increase productivity and reduce errors at the same time? The automation capabilities of managed file transfer software allow you to make a high-volume of file transfers without the need for tedious manual work. Streamlining this process—and eliminating the risk of human error—add to your organization’s bottom line.

Read more about safeguarding company data and limiting risk, or get started with a free trial of managed file transfer.


No Such Thing as a Free File Transfer, Part I: How MFT Saves Time

How MFT Saves Time - GoAnywhere MFTEvery business engages in some kind of information exchange, whether it’s a small retailer attaching an invoice to an email or a hospital sending hundreds of patient records between departments. Some methods of exchanging files, like a basic FTP server or a file sharing app, seem like an inexpensive way to deal with your transfers. In the long run, however, the shortfalls of these tools will likely cost your company significantly more than the investment in a sophisticated managed file transfer (MFT) solution.

A study by the Aberdeen Group found that every file sent “for free” actually has an 80% chance of costing your organization money. In a new series of articles, we’ll break down the reasons why MFT gives your company a better ROI than any other file transfer solution. The first reason we’ll discuss is the time you’ll save with managed file transfer.

We’ve all heard that time is money, and if you’ve ever been the unlucky person manually transferring files by FTP, it’s no stretch of the imagination to think that automated file transfer software would save a bit of time on each exchange. But you probably haven’t even thought of all the ways a rudimentary file transfer tool can waste costly hours. Here are a few:

  1. Dealing with Exceptions

As with any process, your file transfers aren’t always going to go smoothly. While even a basic tool will work most of the time, you’ll inevitably run into the occasional problem which will require you to divert members of your staff away from more important projects to help get the files moving. Aberdeen’s analysis found that those who don’t use MFT have more than twice as many of these errors and exceptions as MFT users. With a single-function file transfer tool, the operator is solely responsible for checking if the transfer succeeded and trying it again if it failed. A good managed file transfer solution has ways of dealing with issues that arise—for example, the software could automatically reconnect and resume the file transfer after a problem occurs with the network.

Moreover, the MFT solution will provide visibility into the status of automated file transfers and let you know if something goes wrong. This allows you to attack the problem immediately and get back to your more strategic initiatives as soon as possible. A basic tool or script may cause you to waste hours just trying to determine what happened to your files.

  1. Upgrades and Modifications

A common solution for moving files is with custom scripts. This seems like an easy option at first. Your company has talented programmers and it’s not too hard to create a homegrown FTP script that gets the job done. The first few times you need a modification or a new feature, that’s not difficult either. But pretty soon your company is transferring thousands of files every day, your homegrown solution is severely lacking in the error-handling, security, and logging capabilities it needs, and updating your mess of sprawling scripts will cost you dearly in expensive programmer hours. Or maybe the original creator of the scripts has left the company and those hours will be spent just trying to figure out how it all works.

Managed file transfer has the features you require as your business needs grow more complex. You can trust that it will continue to be updated when necessary and upgrades won’t require the same technical expertise as creating a homegrown tool does. 

  1. Compliance Requirements and Auditing

Storing and tracking detailed audit information is crucial for staying compliant with PCI DSS, HIPAA, state privacy laws, and other regulations. A managed file transfer solution will store detailed audit records for all file transfer and administrator activity and provide that data in an easily accessible format to authorized users. If you are legally obligated to collect this information, there’s no better time-saver than implementing file transfer software that stores the data automatically.

Furthermore, compliance requirements can always change or new regulations can be put in place. While you may already have a process for complying with current regulations, MFT provides the flexibility to respond to new security requirements without creating too much additional time-consuming work.

  1. Avoiding Downtime.

Just one minute of unplanned system downtime costs a company an average of $5,600. Talk about expensive hours! Make sure your file transfers keep running even if a server goes down by implementing MFT software that integrates clustering. This means you have a group of linked servers running concurrently, with each installation of your MFT tool sharing the same set of configurations and trading partner accounts. The servers in the cluster are in constant communication with each other, so if one fails, the remaining systems in the cluster will continue to service the trading partners. With the fast pace of modern business, you can’t afford to let your transactions wait while you take the time to get your systems functioning again.

Every minute that your business isn’t paying employees to fight fires, write custom scripts, or compile audit reports is a minute that can be put towards the work that helps the bottom line.

Interested in learning more about the ROI of Managed File Transfer? Read the next installment in our series: No Such Thing as a Free File Transfer, Part 2: Cost-effective Security.

 

Learn more about the risks of inadequate FTP implementations or get started with a free trial of managed file transfer today. 


Computing Security Magazine Reviews GoAnywhere

As you probably know, GoAnywhere is not the only managed file transfer product on the market.  A handful of vendors offer their versions of a product to help streamline the file transfer process with features that are designed to keep that data secure.

Many of the people we talk to are researching several companies trying to decide which product will best serve their needs, and naturally, all of the vendors believe theirs is the best fit.

We've been developing resources over the last few years to help define what sets GoAnywhere apart, and as a result, we've built a bigger library of case studies, added a growing collection of customer success videos, and continued to marvel at the growing list of comments that our customers make about our products on LinkedIn.

We've also built an MFT Checklist that provides a list of features and considerations organizations should investigate when talking with competing vendors. The latest evidence we have to support the fact that GoAnywhere is a comprehensive, flexible, well-supported and easy-to-implement solution that can help any industry automate, simplify and encrypt their file transfers is a product review in Computing Security Magazine. GoAnywhere Product ReviewHighlights of the review include these:

"There are plenty of MFT (managed file transfer) solutions on the market, and Linoma's GoAnywhere is one of the most versatile and secure we've seen so far."
"The enhanced file transfer interface is very simple to use, and provides drag-and-drop facilities between the client and their assigned directory on the GoAnywhere host."
"We created a project to securely transfer a large folder, using FTPS from our domain controller to the GoAnywhere host system in minutes."

To read the entire review, you can download it here.    


Managed File Transfer is Focus of IT Jungle Coverage

Following a webinar we did last week called "Automating and Securing File Transfers," industry reporter Dan Burger with IT Jungle spent time talking with Linoma Software's Chief Architect Bob Luebbe to get his take on the challenges involved in maintaining secure and efficient file transfer processes.

Bob said that he's seeing a growing number of companies who are looking for solutions that not only manage secure file transfers with trading partners, but also can facilitate database integration and ad-hoc file transfers.

"For one thing," Luebbe said, "(organizations) want employees to initiate transfers, but with managed and audit capabilities and within an authorized and manageable FTP environment that avoids security exposure. Companies are trying to lock down email to prevent file sharing and there is an emphasis to block the use of free file-sharing sites."

Check out IT Jungle's article entitled "Managed File Transfer More Than Meets the Eye" to read more of Bob's observations, and if you'd like to learn how GoAnywhere addresses the challenges of ad-hoc file transfer security specifically, you'll want to register for this week's webinar, "Ad-Hoc File Transfer: Easy and Secure."


Customer Success Story: United Security Life and Health

It's Friday, heading into a long overdue holiday weekend, so we thought we'd share a video we recently posted that highlights how Lorraine Callahan, a senior programmer analyst with United Security Life and Health, has implemented GoAnywhere to improve workflow and save time.

 

If you'd like to see other customer success stories, visit our website where you can find videos, testimonials, and case studies.


Is Your Company Letting Data Slip Through the Cracks?

data breach, managed file transferMany Americans have spent the last few days frantically searching for receipts and other documentation to finish their taxes before Tuesday, April 17.  No doubt some of those people thought they knew exactly where to find what they needed, and were dismayed to discover that their confidence -- as well as their data -- had been misplaced.

How about your confidence regarding your organization's sensitive data? As managers, are you aware of all of the transactions going in and out of the company network? Who is sending and pulling files, and why? What's the best way to manage all of these data exchanges? Isn't there a more user-friendly solution than prohibiting all FTP communications except from specified computers or user profiles?

Efficient workflow requires efficient data flow

No doubt data security is critical.  So is the ability to exchange information to accomplish daily business goals.  Almost every department needs to exchange files with trading partners, customers, vendors, remote employees, and more.

Here are just a few examples of data your company may be exchanging every day:

Finance/Accounting/HR

  • Tax documents
  • Annual, quarterly monthly reports to shareholders, investors, banks, financial partners
  • Personnel reporting

Marketing/Sales

  • Art files to/from artists, printers, marketing partners
  • Video and other content for web, publishers, printers
  • PDF brochures, proposals, whitepapers to prospects, partners, customers

Information Technologies

  • Data files to/from system integration partners
  • Database exchanges with business networks
  • System updates
  • EDI file transaction exchanges
  • Update to HA and offsite systems

Customer Service

  • Customer update documents
  • Client reporting documents
  • Receipt of supporting documents

Production/Warehousing

  • Supplier data exchange
  • Customer data exchange
  • Inventory reporting

Research & Development

  • Product specifications to/from manufacturing partners
  • Large CAD/engineering data to/from development partners

How do you control the data flow?

Educate your employees

Each organization has developed rules and codes of conduct to maintain productivity, positive morale, and customer confidence.  Ideally, these policies are documented and part of employee training. It's imperative that the rules governing data management are also included in the documented policies, and all employees regardless of their roles need to demonstrate their understanding of the data management policies. Clear directives regarding management's expectations is the first line of defense against data breach.

Implement the appropriate technology solution

The right technology tools can also be a valuable part of the data control approach.  Most data exchanges can be performed through secure email, FTP and network communications. A combined implementation of firewall and managed FTP solutions will help secure and distribute the resource requirements as appropriate for every department's needs.

Firewalls not only protect the company network from outside intruders, but can also help manage internal traffic.  A managed file transfer (MFT) system allows specific types of transfers based on users' permissions or specified events so the inbound/outbound flow of data can be better managed and monitored. With an MFT system, audit logs are automatically kept of each data exchange, and files and emails can be encrypted and secured to ease worries that they might be sent to the wrong people.

The bottom line

Given the multitude of data files that need to be moved in and out of your organization, and the need to create efficient workflows that allow employees to do their jobs while maintaining strict vigilance about data security, few facets of your business are more important than controlling your data flow.  Getting information in the right hands and keeping sensitive data shielded from non-authorized access is an ongoing challenge, but education and the right tools are the keys to success.


How Important is Auditing Your File Transfers?

When you send someone a file via FTP, how do you know -- and later prove -- that it was successfully sent?

It might be possible to save a screen shot as long as the process was simple and you can see all the commands on a single screen.  But what if your commands start getting complex? And if you start sending quite a few files every day, how do you organize all these screen shots so that you can easily retrieve proof 2 1/2 weeks from now. What about 2 1/2 years from now?  Believe me, I've been there and it's no picnic.

Why should you care what files you sent two-and-a-half years ago anyway?  To begin with,  it's the law½ for most of us anyway.  Most businesses are required by law to maintain an audit trail of any files that hold personally identifiable information in the data.  Still, we shouldn't do it just because it is the law, we should do it because it's is a good business practice to protect and track the movement of all business information.

How to Audit

The screen capture option is probably the worst-case scenario in maintaining an audit trail of all your FTP transactions.  It makes sense to look into better tools to manage your FTP processing that make it easier and safer to prove the files have been sent or received from the correct locations.

In most windows-based FTP tools, whether free or purchased, there are options to maintain a log of all your transactions.  Here's an example of GoAnywhere Director's job log that shows the status of your file transfers, and allows you to drill down further into each job to find out even more.

managed file transfer, secure file transfer, audit logs

Other FTP software solutions have similar settings.  Logging your transactions provides the audit trail you need to prove that you have done your part in sending or retrieving the files.  Managed file transfer solutions, in addition to providing necessary file transfer security, provide an even better audit trail by logging exactly who sent or received the files.

Bottom line: Your FTP audit logs should be easy to find and understand just in case you are audited 2 1/2  years from now.