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Microsoft Security

It’s time for a new perspective on Shadow IT

  • Microsoft Secure Blog Staff

Over 80 percent of employees admit to using non-approved SaaS applications in their jobs, and for the most part they have well-intentioned reasons for adopting them. Many report wanting to use software they are familiar with, that is cheaper, quicker to deploy, and better meets their needs than the IT-approved equivalent. This isn’t just about personal preference. It allows employees to skip the learning curve of new software and enables the business to move more quickly.

Empowering employees find creative solutions to business problems and enabling easy access to tools they need are key to driving innovation and productivity.

Flexibility to use preferred tools can also help attract the next generation of talent. Younger workers have grown up using the apps and devices they want to get things done in the way that works for them. Nearly 50 percent prefer tools like chat and messaging, and they are twice a likely as boomers to prefer meeting online versus in person. While the urge to block Shadow IT is understandable, it may signal to new employees that your company culture isn’t open to the new and innovative solutions that often characterize successful businesses.

IT should look for solutions that give employees the freedom to choose the apps they want, while still ensuring the security and compliance your organization demands. One of those solutions is to use a Cloud Access Security Broker.

Empower your workforce with a Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB)

CASB solutions give you a detailed picture of the cloud apps your employees use and help you to monitor and manage them effectively.

A good CASB solution discovers which cloud apps are in use and brings them under the hood into a single interface. Each app is then rated for risk based on industry standards and best practices, so you can easily scan and set policies for how users interact with each app. A good CASB solution can also help protect those apps from advanced security threats.

With better visibility, control, and protection over your Shadow IT, you can help empower greater productivity and manage your security risk. Curious to learn more? Check out our new e-book: Bring Shadow IT into the Light.