Saturday, May 25, 2024

Czech-made software seeks to manage social media users in workplace

By Tom Noda

Not a curtailment of freedom but “reasonable restriction.” This is how IT security firm Safetica Technologies from Czech Republic described its latest Data Loss Prevention (DLP) solution called Safetica 5, which is designed to protect companies from the risks of a data breach caused by the human factor.

Safetica 5 features a monitoring component called Safetica Auditor, which is designed to control Internet and social media use at the workplace to address significant productivity issues for many employers.

“The question is not about making a full prohibition, it?s about setting reasonable restrictions,” said Jakub Mahdal, CEO of Safetica Technologies.

Safetica chief technology officer Pavel Kratky (left) and Safetica business development manager Marwan Chanawani during the media launch

Safetica has partnered with local distributor Valueline Systems and Solutions Corporation to launch the software in the country.

The Czech firm cited a recent study by analytics company comScore which showed Filipino computer users had the second highest Facebook penetration rate in the world at 92.2 percent and spent 41.5 percent of their total time online on social networks.

Mahdal said Safetica Auditor enables organizations to list the sites their employees are visiting and to chart the time spent at these sites.

“It’s more important to give employees a clear time limitation and instead have the software, not the individual manager, sounding the alert. Direct control of Internet use by a line manager will be inconsistent and dominated by temper tantrums and this isn?t in anyone?s best interest,” Mahdal said.

Mahdal explained the new monitoring software provides a third way that is more effective in limiting Internet use besides the traditional and old ways of managing social media in the workplace such as blocking specific sites or establishing a restrictive Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) for their employees.

But Mahdal said a blackout and strict AUPs each have their disadvantages since both strategies could hit employee morale and make the company a less attractive place to work.

Pavel Kratky, chief technology officer of Safetica Technologies, said human factor ? accidental or malicious actions by people inside an organization ? is the primary cause of data leaks besides external threats such as hackers and malware.

Studies conducted by Ponemon Research showed the threats from insiders topped external risks by a 4:1 ratio, with 80 percent of all threats to data security coming from inside a company and only 20 percent from external sources.

“Safetica focuses on the 80 percent ? the insider security threats that traditional firewalls and antivirus solutions ignore,” Kratky said. “We?ve built Safetica with the human factor in mind and this directly influences how it goes about protecting and monitoring the use of company data.”

The executive added Safetica protects data via its endpoint client installed on workstation computers, securing data on individual computers and the company network. From this position, Safetica covers all channels through which data can escape such as emails, printers, and memory sticks.

Safetica?s DLP sandbox technology protects data use by all applications, guarding against leaks without requiring system administers to add specific services or protocols for coverage and substantially simplifying the installation process.

Kratky also said Safetica?s ability to monitor and control activities at the endpoint computer level enables companies to detect and avert security threats at an early stage.

“By looking at user activities such as unusual data access and collection, Safetica can help identify high-risk cases. In addition, discovering unsecure data handling processes or restricting unproductive Internet use pays benefits in the long run,” Kratky said.

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