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Why You Should Be Cautious About How You Share Files

cloud computingThe cloud allows filesharing to be easy, efficient and seamless … but as a business owner, you need to make sure your team understands how & why they’re given access to certain files and folders (and not others). It can become a hindrance, and a security risk, when you have inexperienced users sharing files or folders without following proper procedures.

At ActiveCo, one of our first steps with a new client is reviewing how the network is being used by their staff. Taking the time to learn how a business uses their technology on a daily basis makes it easier to help map out a work flow plan with them. Here are some of our thoughts and reasoning behind cloud-sharing decisions for business owners.

Find a program that allows you to restrict the “shareability” of a file.

We still see companies using old-school file-sharing techniques, such attaching files to an email (often to multiple people). With this method, it’s easy to figure out why so many users have bloated inboxes (and “sent” folders).

Some simple questions we ask when file-sharing:

  • Who should have access to this file or folder?
  • Does this file or folder have restricted information on it?
  • If so, is it password protected?
  • Can this file be accessed via the cloud?

With exclusive access for key team members, as well as the ability to collaborate on files in real-time (no more wondering if you’re look at the most recent version of a file!), setting up file sharing properly can save your business time, money and frustration.

Share the folder URL instead of emailing the actual file.

You can send a colleague a file or folder URL just as you do a website URL. For example, if you wanted to share our website with someone, you would send them https://activeco.com. Similarly, you could send them the URL for an address in File Explorer/Windows.

Depending on the folder you want to direct them to, it would look something like this C:\Documents\Proposals\Projects\File_for_Review

Provide access to a file for a restricted period of time.

You can set up restricted access to a file or folder, and establish what someone can do with that file or folder, for a period of time of your choosing. If they have not reviewed the file or folder by a certain date, the link that you sent them will expire and need to be reset and resent. Since the link “expired”, you know your file is secured again.

It’s important to note that not all file-sharing services for business will have these file-sharing restriction options. Be sure to ask your IT provider if your network security is set up to optimize your team’s workflow and security needs.

By keeping the risks in mind, your can share files with confidence. For more information on how to achieve this, ActiveCo Technology Management can help. To learn more, reach out to us at (604) 425-3433.

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Jeff Penner

Jeff Penner

Jeff has been in the managed services industry since 2015, understanding what business owners are looking for from technology, and helping them find it. The most important element for a business owner taking on a new technology partner is peace of mind and thus Jeff directs his efforts on finding practical information that any leader can apply to their business. Jeff lives in Vancouver, BC, sharing his love for learning and “the great indoors” with his 2 daughters.