Michelle Burbick
Michelle Burbick is the Associate Editor and a blogger for No Jitter, UBM Tech's online community for news and analysis...
Read Full Bio >>

Michelle Burbick | July 03, 2018 |


Team Collaboration: Weighing Security Concerns

Team Collaboration: Weighing Security Concerns How does security, privacy, and compliance factor into team collaboration decisions and use?

How does security, privacy, and compliance factor into team collaboration decisions and use?

Team collaboration has been the hot topic in enterprise communications for at least the last couple of years, and we know from our 2018 Team Collaboration Survey that these tools are quickly making their way into the enterprise. In fact, 90% of 160 enterprise IT respondents indicated that employees within their organizations currently use one or more such tool.

As adoption of these apps continues to grow, whether through IT procurement or virally, it brings security into the spotlight. Our survey results bear that out, with 84% of respondents ranking the ability to meet corporate security, privacy, and compliance mandates as the top factor for evaluating team collaboration apps, as shown below.

Source: No Jitter's 2018 Team Collaboration Survey

While there's "definitely a money factor," security is critically important at Grand Canyon University, agreed Chris Smith, director of IT at the school. GCU, a Christian university with roughly 19,000 students on its Arizona campus and 75,000 online students, runs a hybrid UC environment comprising Cisco, Microsoft, and Zoom on-premises and cloud tools, and is currently evaluating Cisco Webex Teams and Microsoft Teams for team collaboration.

"Cisco comes to the table with security in mind -- and that's great," Smith said. "Too often security is an elective, so it's a nice consideration that helps the cloud transition go smoother." At the same time, Microsoft is showing with Teams that it's finally gotten the message that security can't be an afterthought, he added.

Digging into Security Features
Good thing, because as Irwin Lazar, vice president and service director at Nemertes Research, shared last month on No Jitter, his firm has found security concerns to be the biggest inhibitor to team collaboration adoption. With team collaboration, "enterprise-grade security" should include, at a minimum, encryption at rest and encryption in motion, Lazar told me in an interview.

In addition, Lazar said, enterprise-grade security features might include things like single sign-on to allow IT control access to that app for authentication and tracking log-ins; support for industry security certifications like FedRAMP, HIPAA, ISO 27001, and SOX, as well as for privacy regulations like GDPR; and the ability to integrate with a mobile client for mobile device management (MDM).

Whether dealing with more traditional forms of enterprise communications or team collaboration, "organizations don't have a good appreciation of what data they're collecting, where it's sitting, or what they're doing with it -- and that's where problems come up," said Andreas T. Kaltsounis, partner at BakerHostetler, in a recent interview. Earlier this year, BakerHostetler released its 2018 Data Security Incident Response Report, based on the analysis of more than 560 data security incidents that the firm worked on in 2017. Examining this many incidents gives the firm a lot of perspective into the kind of situations that are causing companies to experience data breaches, Kaltsounis said.

"People aren't thinking about how sensitive the data is that's flowing through their email system until they get hacked," Kaltsounis said. "Those same issues apply to the collaboration software. We've seen situations with developers sending back information on projects, passwords, and keys they are using for different things, and then they have to go back and think about what was in there. There are downstream effects."

One particularly valuable piece of insight the report unveiled is around the issue of third parties that are supplying services, he said. In one example, an email provider was accessed by an attacker, who intercepted an invoice in the email system and attempted to reroute it. Because the email system was also integrated with the IM/presence application, the attacker also gained access to chat and was able to circumvent attempts to authenticate his or her identity.

"If you are only controlling access with user name and password, they can get ahold of those credentials," Kaltsounis said. "It's critical that organizations think about how they're securing remote access to [collaboration] tools" as well as what's being integrated with what, he added.

Next page: Who's getting it right and what enterprise's want


September 26, 2018

Join Kevin Kieller, Microsoft UC&C expert, along with Ribbon Communications and Polycom, for an update on Microsoft Ignite, and a focus on critical things you need to know about your voice deployme

August 29, 2018

Moving your voice services to the cloud introduces new challenges for 9-1-1 services. These include the need to serve multiple locations, and the increased mobility that comes with having a phone t

August 8, 2018

Artificial intelligence (AI) is becoming a reality for your contact center. But to turn the promise of AI into practical reality, there are a couple of prerequisites: Moving to the cloud and integr

March 12, 2018
An effective E-911 implementation doesn't just happen; it takes a solid strategy. Tune in for tips from IT expert Irwin Lazar, of Nemertes Research.
March 9, 2018
IT consultant Steve Leaden lays out the whys and how-tos of getting the green light for your convergence strategy.
March 7, 2018
In advance of his speech tech tutorial at EC18, communications analyst Jon Arnold explores what voice means in a post-PBX world.
February 28, 2018
Voice engagement isn't about a simple phone call any longer, but rather a conversational experience that crosses from one channel to the next, as Daniel Hong, a VP and research director with Forrester....
February 16, 2018
What trends and technologies should you be up on for your contact center? Sheila McGee-Smith, Contact Center & Customer Experience track chair for Enterprise Connect 2018, gives us the lowdown.
February 9, 2018
Melanie Turek, VP of connected work research at Frost & Sullivan, walks us through key components -- and sticking points -- of customer-oriented digital transformation projects.
February 2, 2018
UC consultant Marty Parker has crunched lots of numbers evaluating UC options; tune in for what he's learned and tips for your own analysis.
January 26, 2018
Don't miss out on the fun! Organizer Alan Quayle shares details of his pre-Enterprise Connect hackathon, TADHack-mini '18, showcasing programmable communications.
December 20, 2017
Kevin Kieller, partner with enableUC, provides advice on how to move forward with your Skype for Business and Teams deployments.
December 20, 2017
Zeus Kerravala, principal analyst with ZK Research, shares his perspective on artificial intelligence and the future of team collaboration.
December 20, 2017
Delanda Coleman, Microsoft senior marketing manager, explains the Teams vision and shares use case examples.
November 30, 2017
With a ruling on the FCC's proposed order to dismantle the Open Internet Order expected this month, communications technology attorney Martha Buyer walks us through what's at stake.
October 23, 2017
Wondering which Office 365 collaboration tool to use when? Get quick pointers from CBT Nuggets instructor Simona Millham.
September 22, 2017
In this podcast, we explore the future of work with Robert Brown, AVP of the Cognizant Center for the Future of Work, who helps us answer the question, "What do we do when machines do everything?"
September 8, 2017
Greg Collins, a technology analyst and strategist with Exact Ventures, delivers a status report on 5G implementation plans and tells enterprises why they shouldn't wait to move ahead on potential use ....
August 25, 2017
Find out what business considerations are driving the SIP trunking market today, and learn a bit about how satisfied enterprises are with their providers. We talk with John Malone, president of The Ea....
August 16, 2017
World Vision U.S. is finding lots of goodness in RingCentral's cloud communications service, but as Randy Boyd, infrastructure architect at the global humanitarian nonprofit, tells us, he and his team....
August 11, 2017
Alicia Gee, director of unified communications at Sutter Physician Services, oversees the technical team supporting a 1,000-agent contact center running on Genesys PureConnect. She catches us up on th....
August 4, 2017
Andrew Prokop, communications evangelist with Arrow Systems Integration, has lately been working on integrating enterprise communications into Internet of Things ecosystems. He shares examples and off....
July 27, 2017
Industry watcher Elka Popova, a Frost & Sullivan program director, shares her perspective on this acquisition, discussing Mitel's market positioning, why the move makes sense, and more.
July 14, 2017
Lantre Barr, founder and CEO of Blacc Spot Media, urges any enterprise that's been on the fence about integrating real-time communications into business workflows to jump off and get started. Tune and....
June 28, 2017
Communications expert Tsahi Levent-Levi, author of the popular blog, keeps a running tally and comprehensive overview of communications platform-as-a-service offerings in his "Choosing a W....
June 9, 2017
If you think telecom expense management applies to nothing more than business phone lines, think again. Hyoun Park, founder and principal investigator with technology advisory Amalgam Insights, tells ....
June 2, 2017
Enterprises strategizing on mobility today, including for internal collaboration, don't have the luxury of learning as they go. Tony Rizzo, enterprise mobility specialist with Blue Hill Research, expl....
May 24, 2017
Mark Winther, head of IDC's global telecom consulting practice, gives us his take on how CPaaS providers evolve beyond the basic building blocks and address maturing enterprise needs.
May 18, 2017
Diane Myers, senior research director at IHS Markit, walks us through her 2017 UC-as-a-service report... and shares what might be to come in 2018.
April 28, 2017
Change isn't easy, but it is necessary. Tune in for advice and perspective from Zeus Kerravala, co-author of a "Digital Transformation for Dummies" special edition.
April 20, 2017
Robin Gareiss, president of Nemertes Research, shares insight gleaned from the firm's 12th annual UCC Total Cost of Operations study.
March 23, 2017
Tim Banting, of Current Analysis, gives us a peek into what the next three years will bring in advance of his Enterprise Connect session exploring the question: Will there be a new model for enterpris....
March 15, 2017
Andrew Prokop, communications evangelist with Arrow Systems Integration, discusses the evolving role of the all-important session border controller.
March 9, 2017
Organizer Alan Quayle gives us the lowdown on programmable communications and all you need to know about participating in this pre-Enterprise Connect hackathon.
March 3, 2017
From protecting against new vulnerabilities to keeping security assessments up to date, security consultant Mark Collier shares tips on how best to protect your UC systems.
February 24, 2017
UC analyst Blair Pleasant sorts through the myriad cloud architectural models underlying UCaaS and CCaaS offerings, and explains why knowing the differences matter.
February 17, 2017
From the most basics of basics to the hidden gotchas, UC consultant Melissa Swartz helps demystify the complex world of SIP trunking.
February 7, 2017
UC&C consultant Kevin Kieller, a partner at enableUC, shares pointers for making the right architectural choices for your Skype for Business deployment.
February 1, 2017
Elka Popova, a Frost & Sullivan program director, shares a status report on the UCaaS market today and offers her perspective on what large enterprises need before committing to UC in the cloud.
January 26, 2017
Andrew Davis, co-founder of Wainhouse Research and chair of the Video track at Enterprise Connect 2017, sorts through the myriad cloud video service options and shares how to tell if your choice is en....
January 23, 2017
Sheila McGee-Smith, Contact Center/Customer Experience track chair for Enterprise Connect 2017, tells us what we need to know about the role cloud software is playing in contact centers today.