A staggering 80% of pharmaceutical and healthcare professionals now access work documents on the go. Yet in the absence of a safe file sharing alternative, 90% are resorting to unauthorized, free file sharing services, according to a new report released by Workshare. The report titled "Workforce Mobilization" is based on more than 5,000 responses from a range of companies across the UK, EMEA, and the U.S. The findings reveal the true extent to which mobile users are increasingly circumventing policies set by organizations and using unsanctioned applications to share and collaborate on documents outside the office. This raises major concerns over the security of personal identifiable information and sensitive documents, and highlights the challenges facing the sector when it comes to enabling mobility while ensuring data protection and mitigating risk.
Consumer applications do not provide organizations with any audit trail or visibility of which documents are being shared. This makes pharmaceutical and healthcare organizations extremely vulnerable to security breaches and puts them at risk of breaching industry regulations. Organizations must act quickly as the survey reveals:
- 72% use their personal devices for work
- The majority (55%) of these workers also use free file sharing services to collaborate
- 90% of pharmaceutical and healthcare professionals do not have direct authorization from their administrators to use consumer file sharing applications, up from 82% in 2012
"Pharmaceutical and healthcare organizations can no longer ignore the increasing use of mobile and tablets by employees working on the move. Instead, they must find ways to meet their needs while also meeting strict regulations surrounding protection of personal identifiable data, and auditability," comments Anthony Foy, CEO of Workshare. "We've provided secure file sharing methods for more than 14 years and extended this to encompass all mobile channels, enabling organizations to strike the balance between users' demands, and their own requirements for compliance and complete data protection."
Leading analyst firm Forrester highlights this changing working behavior. "By 2015, most very large enterprises will have to provide more structured and formalized support for employees who elect to use personal mobile devices for work - including smartphones and tablet PCs," wrote Brownlee Thomas, Forrester Research, Inc. "In a recent survey, we learned that supporting more types of mobile devices and platforms will be a critical or high priority during the next 12 months for 73% of firms with 5,000-plus employees, and also for 67% of firms with 1,000 to 4,999 employees."