Collaboration Security & Governance

IT’s Next Big Headache

The popularity of new collaboration applications like Microsoft Teams and Slack introduces new areas of security exposure. Even worse, IT isn’t prepared. These platforms enable users to add guests, share files, and change security settings without IT guidance. Each time IT teams try to lock controls, a slew of Shadow IT applications pop up instead.

What is Collaboration Security & Governance?

Collaboration Security boils down to managing risk across your workstream collaboration ecosystem. This covers a broad set of security-related areas: access and usage policies, user and channel management, and workflow automation. Unlike more intensive security solutions like DLP, CASB, or antivirus software, this enlightened form of governance balances risk with user productivity. When collaboration security is done well, it ensures consistent policy management across multiple collaboration and communications platforms.

Guest Access

Guests are an important part of the workstream collaboration ecosystem. However, how do you ensure they only have access to your environment for the appropriate amount of time?

Over-enabled end users create unintentional internal threats by sharing files too freely. How do you prevent accidental data leakage?

Microsoft Teams and Slack offer app stores full of great 3rd party plug-ins to enhance the value of the platform. Not all apps are created equally; the challenge is in controlling them. 

The beauty of easy data sharing is also its most dangerous security risk. Due to complexity in terminology and permissions models, it’s easy for both IT and users to inadvertently expose key content. 

Types of Workstream Collaboration Security Issues

As an InfoSec or IT Professional, you’re continuously evaluating and assessing security risks. A large part of this security risk assessment focuses on dealing with end users and their, at times, questionable decisions. Their goals are simple: they’re just trying to get stuff done. Unfortunately, they don’t see risk the way IT does. If security risk is a concern at all, it’s an afterthought at best. In this blog we outline the security threats that exist in most businesses.

Adding (and then forgetting to track) guests from public domains

Installing third-party apps from platform app stores with reckless abandon

Sharing files through an unsanctioned application

Changing sharing settings to “anyone with the link”

Hosting all Zoom meetings using personal meeting ID

Video Conferencing Security Loopholes

Security Settings

Each UC platform comes with its unique list of security settings. Keeping track of these settings becomes even more difficult as they’re constantly being updated. How do you navigate the complexity and ensure a consistent experience across multiple platforms?

Polices

For emerging technologies, the conventional IT impulse is to lock down/discourage adoption until the organization fully understands the risks. However, the adoption of new features isn’t just a security decision anymore.

Phishing

Apart from exploiting security bugs, cybercriminals have other attack vectors when it comes to collaboration. These phishing attacks include stealing credentials and delivering malware payloads through links and attachments, just like email.

Recordings Exposure

Any number of different security misses can inadvertently make recordings public. Lack of complex password or default password requirements and nonexistent policy regarding recordings could lead to data leakage.

Compare Challenges by Platform

Each Unified Communications and collaboration platform introduces its own unique challenges. With different settings and features, there are some common collaboration security and governance issues seen on each platform.

Did you know guest access is hardest to control on Microsoft Teams?

With multiple places to control guests throughout Azure, the Office 365 admin center, and the Teams admin console, it's difficult to ensure guests are properly managed.

Keeping track of the latest features in Zoom is tough.

With so many new releases, IT can't keep up. Many departments audit settings less often than new ones are released. This creates a security blind spot.

These apps are out of control!

Slack's plethora of third-party apps enable user productivity. However, many require excessive permissions, and removing already-installed apps is painful.

Compare features

UC and Collaboration Platform Feature Comparison Guide

Beyond the difficulties of managing each platform, there are some issues common to all. Ensuring consistent governance across multiple platforms is key to a secure environment. This is just one of the challenges of workstream collaboration that must be overcome. Luckily, multi-platform collaboration security tools like PowerSuite simplify management and administration.

Monitor, Measure & Manage Collaboration Security

De-Risk with the 3Ms

The traditional model of controlling user and application permissions is too cumbersome in the modern digital workplace. The normal IT governance approach simply causes users to shift to some shadow IT solution as a work-around. In the new world, enterprises need to allow most user behavior, and subsequently manage issues after the fact.

Monitor
Rather than jump to a fix, IT first carefully observes their multi-platform collaboration environment to understand how their users and guests are using Microsoft Teams and Slack.

Measure
IT compares the risk exposure profile with predefined workstream collaboration policies. This allows IT to measure and report on whether corporate policies are being violated.

Manage
Both IT and end users can jump into action to either remediate or create an exception where governance standards aren’t being met. However, predefined workflows or PowerSuite-directed AI workflows should be initiated well before any human intervention is necessary.

Step 1: Collaboration Security and Governance RightTrackTM

Before considering what tools you need to mitigate risk in your environment, start with a consulting engagement to model your organization’s collaboration interactions and risk levels.

From there, you can establish data governance policies and land on a framework for education and measurement. The end game is ensuring that your organization can appropriately balance collaboration and sharing transparency with data protection and privacy.

Ask most C-level executives about collaboration governance, and topics like backup, disaster recovery, DLP, CASB, and malware protection immediately come to mind. PowerSuite addresses a different risk: that of over-empowered users accustomed to solving their own problems any way they can. They are often unconscious that the information they’re sharing is their company’s greatest asset.

Extend the Native Platform

 PowerSuite embraces, extends, and simplifies the native platform security models by offering a single solution, which allows for execution across multiple platforms including Teams and Slack.

Self-Service Security

Empower users to manage their workspaces while easily complying with company policies. This “self-service” delegation is a GenZ fit that transcends the inefficient IT security enforcement approach.

Collaboration Risk Monitoring

PowerSuite proactively monitors for risk exposure and automatically enforces management and security policies running across multiple platforms including Slack and Teams.

IT & End User Harmony

The PowerSuite model helps IT move from “command and control” to “trust, but verify” – adjusting the delivery method of collaboration security in a way that creates a secure and frictionless experience for users.

Check Out More Collaboration Security Resources

AllData SheetsVideoseBooksWhitepapersBlogsCase StudiesWebinarsInfographicGuideCollaboration Security

Collaboration Security & Governance
Data Sheet

Workstream collaboration allows employees to be more productive than ever before. However, this new...

Read More
Workstream collaboration challenges Unify Square

Overcoming Challenges of Workstream Collaboration

A Look at Workstream Collaboration Applications in the Digital Workplace Today Exploring the love-hate...

Read More

Remote Work Means Increased Challenges for IT 

Top 6 Increased WFH UC Challenges & Solutions    As the world struggles with the unprecedented COVID-19...

Read More
collaboration platform cybersecurity

Securing Team Collaboration Webinar

Best Practices for Proactively Managing Collaboration Security and Governance   

Read More
Skype for Business to Zoom migration

Securing Workstream Collaboration Whitepaper

Team collaboration success requires a proactive approach to security and governance As organizations adopt workstream...

Read More

Seven Ways that User Hacks Increase Collaboration Security Risk

IT Risk Assessment Best Practices for Collaboration Success As an IT Professional, you’re continuously...

Read More

With the introduction of collaboration to your communications stack, there are many additional considerations IT needs to keep in mind. With increased collaboration and visibility, it’s important to reduce the risk of security exposure from employees and guests.

Shopping Basket