How many times have you used Google Drive to quickly share work documents? What about WeTransfer? Or have you ever sent business documents to your email to continue your work at home? All of this (unless you get permission from your organization to use these services) is known as Shadow IT.
1-What is Shadow IT?
Shadow IT refers to IT systems or projects that are controlled by someone other than the IT department of a company. The IT staff has no idea which employees use these platforms in many circumstances.
Of course, using unrestricted software is risky because it might lead to data leakage and pave the road for a hacker. It could be a problem with personal data. It could also be against the business policy or breach some app license agreements. However, studies have revealed that the average organization has 20 times more apps running than IT staff realize.
2-The primary threats to Shadow IT
*Cyber Security and Backup
Employees have been relatively complacent about cybersecurity as a result of the Covid-19 virus’s acceleration of remote work. Shadow IT may make company operations easier – and many organizations have undoubtedly needed it in recent months – but it also increases cybersecurity concerns.
If your IT staff has no knowledge of the cloud system program or file that you are using in your organization, they cannot be held liable for any consequences. These include those that have an impact on the whole company infrastructure. While utilizing Shadow IT, it is your obligation to safeguard the security of your corporate data. Otherwise, your entire organization could be jeopardized.
If you work for the government, health care, banking, or any other highly regulated industry, you are most certainly subject to local normative rules that restrict your use of information technology. It is possible that your internal systems will prevent you from accessing specific websites or applications.
If you acquire access to an unlawful third-party service and, for example, share some of your customers’ or workers’ personal data with them, you may be in violation of GDPR, CCPA, or another personal data regulation. If you do not record Shadow IT’s data processing processes, you may be violating your internal compliance regulations.
Cost information is not frequently shared between departments. For example, if accounts process an invoice originated by sales using third-party cloud software, IT is unlikely to be informed. This leads to unanticipated IT expenses, such as license fees, extra off-budget phones, extra laptops that do not conform with business standards, and so on.
3-What are the benefits of Shadow IT?
Employees clearly demand more adaptable tools for work. With the development of remote work, it’s no wonder that people are answering emails on their phones. While this complicates work-life balance, it is our reality. However, not everything is a problem.
Not every business is ready to embrace new technologies straight away. Shadow IT, on the other hand, already performs this, making employees’ and management’s lives easier. If an app isn’t allowed by IT but nevertheless functions successfully by making life easier for businesses and even improving revenue and KPIs, this could be a good thing. That’s where the age-old topic of risk versus reward enters the picture – the ever-present balance between risk-averse departments like Legal, IT, Finance, and Sales and Marketing Leaders. Of course, there are some exceptions.
*Initiative and participation
It is motivating when an employee solves a problem on his or her own initiative. However, if they cease utilizing the same tools, they will fall behind because this indicates that the company is not producing many advances. For example, if a lawyer must always reconcile paper contracts rather than using DocuSign, they will become trapped, and their job will slow down since most signatures take time. This is infuriating, especially during a global pandemic.
In conclusion, Shadow IT is an insecure cloud service that puts your company at risk of:
4-How should you respond?
Therefore, Shadow IT is not simply a cybersecurity risk, but it can also be a sign of an ineffective IT strategy. You may dramatically reduce shadow IT-related hazards and boost employee productivity by listening to your employees’ requirements and giving them tools that are both useful and secure.
If you wish to strengthen your cybersecurity strategy by implementing an efficient user monitoring system. Request a consultation with Teknologiia’s experts to see how our solution can meet your specific requirements.
Original Source: Teknologiia Team