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6 Tips For Preventing Shadow IT And Driving Business Outcomes

While Shadow IT can be an effective way to provide employees with productivity tools, it also poses cybersecurity risks and other problems that could affect your business's outcomes. Learn more about what shadow IT is, how it affects businesses, and how you can prevent its occurrence in your company.

What is Shadow IT?

Shadow IT is the term given to an employee's use of technology that has not been sanctioned by an organization or their IT management. This can include non-approved software, hardware, and cloud services. Companies don't always know when employees are using Shadow IT tools because many times they're circumventing cybersecurity protocols in place for approved technologies and accessing content through unapproved devices. Employees who are using Shadow IT can also put your company's data at risk, create cybersecurity vulnerabilities and cause other problems for your business.

What are the risks of Shadow IT?

Employees using unauthorized technology for work can pose cybersecurity risks, as well as other problems that could affect your business's outcomes.

Cybersecurity Risks

Shadow IT tools often don't come with the same level of security features and protection found in approved technologies. When employees are accessing data through unapproved devices or software applications, they're opening up your company to cybersecurity risks. These risks can include malware and ransomware infections, data breaches, and other security incidents.

Business Outcomes

Shadow IT can also have a negative impact on business outcomes by causing productivity problems and compliance issues. Unauthorized software and hardware can lead to lost time and money as employees struggle to get their work done using outdated and unsupported technologies. Unauthorized cloud services may also lead to compliance issues as users access content that is not permitted under your cybersecurity or regulatory policies.

How can you prevent Shadow IT?

To help you reduce the occurrence of shadow IT in your company, we've outlined some best practices below:

  1. Provide employees with a list of approved software and hardware that they can use for work.

  2. Implement cybersecurity protocols that restrict the use of unauthorized technologies.

  3. Educate employees on the risks of using Shadow IT tools and how to stay safe online.

  4. Monitor employee internet usage and track which applications and websites they are accessing.

  5. Restrict access to certain content and data based on your company's cybersecurity and compliance policies.

  6. Use a content filtering solution to help enforce these policies.

Need help getting started? If you need help preventing Shadow IT to lower the risk of cybersecurity threats and drive your business outcomes, contact us today!

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