Do you know the answer? While perhaps your company is well equipped and can answer the question, many small to mid-sized companies cannot. If you find that you are among the firms that cannot answer the question you should take an interest in knowing.
Why you ask? Here are five important reasons:
- Financial – Computing and network resources are costly. Resources that are utilized for non-business purposes consume precious resources and cost the company money. Some personal communications may be acceptable but there are limits that certain individuals might take advantage of.
- Security – Unauthorized or rouge applications may impact information security. When properly utilized as part of an overall strategy, applications such as Dropbox or Google Drive may be great for your business. However they may also provide a platform for lost data, data leakage, or theft if being utilized without company knowledge or appropriate safeguards. The problem may be further compounded when an employee has resigned and maintains the information stored on Internet devices.
- Productivity – It may be within the boundaries of your business policies to allow employees to use Facebook, Twitter, personal email, and surf the web within certain timeframes. Without being able to measure usage you may have undesired activity that negatively impacts productivity, is detrimental to the business culture, and or potentially creates a hostile work environment
- Piracy – Software piracy not only affects the developer but also the company that installs the software. An IDC study found that 37 percent of midsized companies that participated in software audits had pirated software within their environment. While there are obvious impacts to the developer with lost revenue and potential dissatisfaction of those using pirated software, many times pirated software contains vulnerabilities including viruses, worms and Trojans. Employee devices containing pirated software that are used within the business environment can contribute to compromise of the company network.
- Reputation – With all of the online media your business reputation can suffer serious harm. Social media can help spread news around the globe in a matter of moments. With companies searching online for the products or services your company offers having bad things show up in search engines can directly impact your bottom line. News of a breach, low employee morale, or piracy can seriously damage the business reputation.
Engaging a consulting company that can perform regular audits of your business infrastructure or managed service providers that can monitor activity in real-time can be a cost effective solution to the problem.
Network Management Solutions has been providing pragmatic solutions for business since 1996. For more information please contact us.