Shadow IT is a new concept in the industry that can sound scary based on its name. Unfortunately, it is actually pretty terrifying for companies who do not take actions to prevent or limit its occurrence. We break down what you need to know below.
What is Shadow IT?
Shadow IT is when employees start to use their own personal devices for business purposes. Many employees use this as a workaround when they are having a problem with company devices or provided programs they should be using. Often, employees resort to these actions because it meets an immediate need for them and provides a quick solution to their problem. While this may be a quick fix for employees, it is a nightmare for companies because it poses a security risk.
What Are the Risks Associated with Shadow IT?
The biggest risk that comes with Shadow IT is security. You have set up company systems for a reason and while you know those reasons and what a lack of security can lead to, your employees are probably not thinking about these issues when faced with a time-sensitive situation. While eliminating shadow IT would be the optimal solution, there is no surefire way to completely get rid of it, as you cannot control what your employees have access to outside of work. Instead, you are much more likely to manage or reduce it.
Prevent Security Risks: Implement Mobile Device Management
Trying to eliminate shadow IT can seem controlling and discourage employees, leading to other problems. Instead, you should focus on reducing it with a service such as mobile device management to provide easy access to approved devices when away from the office or when a company device is not working. Your company gets security, your employees get new devices!
In the last decade, companies have seen an increased use in mobile devices. These items include not only laptops and mobile phones, but tablets, watches, and more. Every device has its own unique purpose. Some companies give employees one device, while others provide three or more mobile devices to use throughout the work day. Having a tablet or other mobile device on hand can be very beneficial for employees.
How Can Mobile Device Management Reduce Shadow IT?
If you do not provide your employees with mobile materials, they will use their own personal devices to meet their needs. This puts your company information at a serious risk. Implementing a company-wide mobile device management strategy ensures all devices are updated with the latest security software and also ensures employees are not reaching for their personal devices to complete a task at work.
National Companies & Shadow IT
Mobile device management greatly reduces the threats associated with shadow IT. If your company has locations across multiple states, mobile device management may seem like a headache, however, there is one easy solution: working with a national IT company. A company such as Tie National has experience launching projects across the nation and can ensure consistency throughout your locations. Additionally, having mobile phones and other devices managed by an outside IT company can save you money by combining accounts into one carrier service.
Talk to an IT Company Today
For other ideas about controlling shadow IT and how to best approach the issue, be sure to reach out to your local IT Company. Experienced in a variety of IT Services and dedicated to making your company’s technology run smoothly, Tie National is just a quick call away at 630-301-7444. Call now!
Michael Durante spent his teenage years into his early 20s climbing the ladder in a branch of a successful banking firm, starting as a teller and ending as a Sr. Branch Manager within 6 years. In 2003, he left the banking world to join his father and create TIE National, a telecom company 60 years in the making. Together, they grew the company from a two-man operation solely working on telephones to a multi-million dollar international business with employees in over a dozen states, covering everything from phone systems to cloud products and computer systems. You can find Michael on LinkedIn.