Date: 27.05.2021
Arun Natarajan | Head of System Operations

Security in file storage is a critical topic. File security is about classifying, protecting, and controlling access to the data and its storage, in most cases. Every organization has diverse data storage and sharing requirements. Choosing the right solution is a challenge.

There is an increasing demand for self-managed file sharing and collaboration platforms. This is primarily due to the organization’s challenges to keep the data secure and available to everyone who needs it, regardless of the location. Based on our experience in setting up file sharing and collaboration platforms for customers who deal with highly confidential data, we come up with the top features to consider while choosing your organization’s file sharing and collaboration needs.

1 Self-managed and open source

With self-managed file sharing and collaboration platforms, data is in your control; it can be in the cloud or on your local premises. These days, many organizations and governments mandate that the data stay within their infrastructure or country. Though self-hosted systems have administrative requirements, it is not anymore a choice in many places.

The open-source adds value with transparency and the source code availability. Source code availability makes it easier to customize and extend the solutions to the local organization’s requirements.

2 Data access control

Control of data is a crucial thing. Generally, it is more about where the information is stored and how it is managed and accessed.

You should be able to define the access control on organizational files and directories based on different criteria like Users, Groups, and Locations. For example, an organization policy file in your file share, where every employee got read permission and the policymaker got the write privileges.

In many cases, we found that organizations require sharing files with external users or entities. The file-sharing solution should support a simple and secure method of sharing files with external users and protecting the share with proper authentication and validity.

3 Security and visibility

The systems must have common security standards in place; we could count on compliance, data policy enforcements, user management, and auditing capabilities.

Evaluate the auditing and logging capabilities to ensure that the solution can be integrated with your organization’s security visibility tools. Also, consider data encryption based on your requirements the more complex the encryption methods, the less the collaboration features.

4 Scalability

Smaller capacity and system resources may be enough for your current requirements. File sharing and collaboration solutions must be chosen with expansion in mind. Scalability to be considered from all dimensions – architecture, components, software dependencies. Start right from the beginning to ensure that the security file-sharing solution supports your future requirements. Unlike commercial file sharing solutions, storage scalability depends on your infrastructure capacity.

5 Collaboration and integration

There is a possibility that the most common requirements available in an open-source solution, or it would be possible to enhance the solution to support your needs. The growing integration partners we see with open source solutions make it possible to enrich features. Some of the most requested features are communication, tasks management, whiteboard, document collaboration, and similar.

The file-sharing and collaboration solutions integration capabilities help us with data migration, authentication and extend the features with external or third-party solutions. But the more dependencies will make it challenging to keep the system secure and scalable. Choose the components carefully in a way that the technology stack does not prevent us from scaling.

Conclusion

At Oivan, we help our customers to choose the appropriate file-sharing and collaboration solutions, ranging from small organizations to big ones with Petabytes of data. We have done large-scale deployments with Nextcloud file sharing and collaboration platforms and are actively engaged in enhancing the solution’s features.

Let’s talk! Feel free to contact Arun Natarajan | Head of System Operations for more information about this subject | arun.natarajan@oivan.com | +966 56 280 4268+971 58 580 4268