Shadow IT has aided in retaining competitive advantage and promoting innovation in many ways, not just because of user accessibility and higher efficiency, but also because of the data insights provided by these applications.
Employees’ demand for video conferencing, messaging, collaboration and file-sharing options grew as they moved to remote work. Employees may employ shadow IT to simplify work procedures or collaborate with external stakeholders.
Although controlling shadow IT risk may appear daunting, companies can take several actions to reduce risk while improving their compliance posture.
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Create a shadow IT management program
The shadow IT program must be in line with the company’s cyber security mandate, assuming the organization has one. It should also be adaptable enough to accommodate expansion, technology advancements, and behavioral shifts.
Many people in various sectors have been forced to work remotely as a result of the global pandemic. For many people, the switch to remote work involves a behavioral shift. They had to employ tools that their organization had never used or only used infrequently, such as video conferencing software.
Since testing new technologies can reduce the quantity of shadow IT accepted by workers, the shadow IT program should coincide with the technology acquisition goals. In addition, if management recognizes the potential in shadow IT, it might be the next technology adopted by the organization.
Businesses must scrutinize their network to determine whether or not or where they have a shadow IT issue
Organizations must determine where all of their data sits [in house], in the data center, at the edge, or in the cloud, regardless of whether workers use company-issued or personal (i.e., BYOD) devices.
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Businesses must then regularly monitor their network for new and unknown devices, reviewing the list between scans to detect when new devices emerge.
This may be included in regular business vulnerability scanning, which is a commonly used security recommended practice. Businesses will be able to collect information as to where new devices are on their network as well as specific information about what sort of device they are using this method.
Similarly, organizations may leverage log data from their existing firewalls, SIEMS, proxies, and MDM tools to detect cloud services that are not within IT’s control. This information may help organizations figure out which services are being utilized, who are using them, and how frequently and how much data is being uploaded and downloaded.
When it comes to governance and security, businesses should be tough
As news of data and security breaches continues to circulate, no firm worried about its brand or image can afford to accept shortcuts when it comes to app and data protection and governance. Shadow IT is a clear risk, and the IT department has all authority to be strict about protocol violations. There is, nevertheless, room for moderation. Several end-user apps and reports, for example, are developed using third-party software that adheres to strict governance and security requirements. A commercial CRM solution that allows users to easily create dashboards is one example. These are apps that IT does not have to monitor.
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