Employees Feel Responsibility to Protect Corporate Data

Ten percent of respondents report file transfer methods have caused their organization to be out of compliance with regulations or corporate policy.

data security and IT management

The protection of important corporate data is seen as a personal responsibility of the employees who work for that organization, despite the fact that protecting that data might require more work, according to a survey of more than 100 IT professionals by software company Ipswitch.

However, results indicated organizations have a long way to go in protecting themselves--15 percent of IT pros admitted that while their organizations do have a process or method in place for transferring information, employees can go rogue and regularly work around them.

While the survey spotlights organizations’ methods for transferring corporate information–and people’s feelings about their own role in protecting it–it also demonstrates a need for further education around the role managed file transfer (MFT) plays in today’s businesses.

For example, when asked what MFT stands for, only 16 percent of respondents answered correctly.

Compared to other industry concepts, such as bring your own device (BYOD), which 55 percent identified correctly, awareness for managed file transfer has a ways to go in order to reach its potential for protecting corporate files and preventing preventable risks.

In addition, 33 percent liken their file transfer process to a library, where files are kept in one place for people to find them. For 16 percent, it is like a mediocre delivery service, where files are tracked inconsistently.

"With all we know today, and all the tools that are available to protect the transfer of corporate files, it’s unfortunate to see organizations still lack centralized, comprehensive processes and methods," Steve Hess, vice president of products and strategy at Ipswitch, said in a statement. "While it’s great to see the responsibility employees’ feel for corporate information, I challenge businesses to look at the transfer of files as seriously as they do things like encryption and compliance–especially as threats to those files become more prevalent across the extended enterprise."

Ten percent of respondents reported that file transfer methods have caused their organization to be out of compliance with a regulation or corporate policy.

Overall, while 84 percent of respondents said they feel a sense of responsibility when it comes to protecting company data, nearly half (42 percent) report their organization does not mandate methods for securely transferring corporate file or have an automated system in place to mitigate the risk of human error.

The report warns the lack of corporate oversight can have a business-critical impact. Nearly one-fifth (18 percent) of respondents report they have lost a critical file, 11 percent have spent more than one hour trying to retrieve that file, and 10 percent have lost the file forever--after spending significant time looking for it.