According to recent research from collaboration company Intralinks, 49 percent of companies block access to file-sharing services like Dropbox. As Gigaom recently reported, the concern is that these consumer services are a significant and growing source of data loss.
One solution is information rights management (IRM), a set of technologies used to protect and control how files are accessed and shared. We’re familiar with IRM from its adoption by music-sharing and ebook companies to protect copyrighted materials, but its adoption for enterprise file sharing was significantly hampered by the need for clunky plug-ins or dedicated readers.
Now new IRM solutions have emerged that don’t require plug-ins, giving users a simple and seamless experience. These new solutions provide lifetime control over information, giving the ability to select who, how and when a file is viewed and shared. Users can prescribe viewing rights beforehand or at any time grant or retract rights. Rich analytics alert when a file is opened or shared, given unparalleled insight into how files are being used.
Just last month, Intralinks acquired the document security provider docTrackr in order to streamline a plugin-free IRM experience for customers to ease user adoption and reduce operational support requirements. For true enterprise-grade file sharing, we think that IRM is rapidly becoming a necessity, not a nice-to-have.