5 Reasons to Replace FTP File Sharing Now

Many companies and employees use File Transfer Protocol (FTP) servers to share and receive files, data and documents – both with and from external parties. Although FTP is relatively inexpensive and fairly easy to use, the technology dates back to the 1970s. In today’s digital and mobile world, FTP file sharing does not come without some risk when it comes to handling sensitive data and file sharing.

Here are five reasons why you should consider an alternative to FTP file sharing:

1. FTP is NOT secure: With today’s massive risk of corporate data breaches, there isn’t a company out there that isn’t concerned about data security. Plain FTP offers no encryption of data in transit or at rest, potentially leaving confidential information exposed. Sending user names and passwords via FTP leaves them in the clear, unencrypted and exposed to cyber-threats. In fact, FTP servers can be accessed with any FTP client, making it virtually impossible to secure both ends.

2. FTP is cumbersome: To send and share files with a new contact, a new FTP account needs to be set up. Users do not normally have access to FTP server administration, and managing FTP processes is far from user-friendly, so they need to rely on the help of an IT Administrator to create new accounts, retrieve forgotten passwords and remove accounts for those who no longer require access. This can result in user accounts that are left activated for too long, and in users sharing accounts in order to avoid waiting for IT for access.  Both of these scenarios put the safety, security and privacy of data at risk.

3. FTP management tools are complicated: FTP sharing does not normally allow users and administrators to set policies to automatically expire or purge files. Every file ever sent to or from an FTP server remains on the server until an IT administrator deletes it.  Manual management of these files is a low-value, labor-intensive chore for IT, and another needless security vulnerability.

4. FTP lacks adequate auditing tools: FTP provides limited capabilities for companies to track file transfers: who sent what, to whom, and when. In the wake of an attack on the FTP server, or the use of FTP to leak sensitive information, companies struggle to track, diagnose, report or conduct forensics on the security breach. Without the ability to provide an audit trail, FTP flie sharing makes it difficult for companies to take the necessary steps to prevent subsequent breaches, and to achieve regulatory compliance.

5. FTP is unreliable: When sending a file via an FTP server, the sender has no way to verify whether the recipient successfully received or downloaded the file. If an error occurs during the transfer, the sender is not notified. Without external verification (e.g., via email, text, or voice call), it is difficult to know when a successful FTP file transfer has been made.

It’s Time for FTP Replacement

If your company is still using FTP for file sharing and collaboration, now is a good time to take advantage of a modern and secure file sync and share solution as an FTP replacement.

To learn more, you can read our newest white paper on Reasons to Replace FTP File Sharing. Get it here.