Securing your cloud environment (i.e. your Unified Communications network) takes a comprehensive approach that covers these three steps:
1. Minimize Shadow IT
Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) has opened up new doors everywhere for organizations as they seek new ways to improve their business processes. But the very things that make SaaS perfect for business – easy integration, low initial cost, scalability, and hassle-free upgrades – are also what makes SaaS a security nightmare for IT.
It’s a widespread problem – most employees admit they’ve used non-approved SaaS applications while on the job. When they bypass IT to procure/install/configure/maintain their own applications, they create shadow IT. To minimize shadow IT, organizations can make sure employees are not deploying their own UC tools without IT’s knowledge by running a Shadow IT Assessment.
2. Implement the Right Tools
Good IT asset management is also important here, ensuring IT teams have consistent visibility into which programs are running on the network. Managing an ever-expanding unified communications ecosystem is a complex operation. Be sure to augment these tools with security solutions that minimize risk, such as access management tools that ensure only authorized users can access your corporate UC infrastructure as well as web application security tools to reduce vulnerabilities. Also, conduct security and compliance assessments regularly to ensure there are no vulnerabilities that could result in non-compliance or a data breech.
3. Practice Ongoing Security Management
Proper vetting and configuration of third-party tools is a good start. Using the right tools is essential, but managers need to think proactively in order to protect their assets in a cloud-based world.
Ongoing security management means conducting compliance checks on third-party tools, internal systems, and hardware that enables the UC environment. In addition, it means actively monitoring all enterprise applications with an eye toward updating them as often as necessary.