The Dangers of Rogue IT

Rogue IT
refers to end-users’ habit of introducing tools to manage their workload,
without the approval of IT administrators. It occurs when users believe that
IT-proposed solutions are implemented slowly and are overly complicated to use.
This concept is not entirely new to the tech community. However, due to our increased
reliance on mobile devices and the accessibility of new online collaboration
and management software, Rogue IT has become so prevalent that the Microsoft
community is abuzz with this concept. A month ago, Bamboo attended Unity
Connect where numerous sessions touched upon this issue, as well as its dangers
and possible solutions.  

Why is Rogue IT a problem?

When
users “go rogue,” they expose their organization to numerous security threats
and disperse valuable company assets and information into outside sources. This
is extremely contradictory to our current efforts to pull all our data together
into one secure platform. After all, aren’t we using SharePoint in order to
store and access our information safely?

Imagine
that one day you discover that your organization has hundreds of accounts with
an online content management service provider of which you didn’t know. Or,
that your end-users created private YouTube channels for distributing your
video assets, instead of sharing them in your own SharePoint environment. This
decentralization of data is frustrating and counterproductive at best. But it
can get much worse. What if you realized that all your data, which you thought
was secure, had been hacked because an employee added an unauthorized Wi-Fi
hotspot to “fix” your poor internet connection in the office?

Is this happening at my
organization?

If your
organization sanctioned SharePoint or Office 365 for your employees to use, but
you –or your colleagues– regularly rely on one or more different tools to get
work done, such as GoogleDrive, Slack, or Dropbox, then the answer is yes.

What’s the solution?

Listen to your
end-users’ needs and make the rollout processes of the appropriate, IT-approved
solutions quicker. Provide them with specific use case scenarios and SharePoint
tutorials. Based on the sessions at Unity Connect, we’ve concluded that Microsoft
is very much aware of this wide-spread issue in the community and wants to
provide us with a good solution. They propose that Office 365 Groups could put
an end to Rogue IT, thanks to their flexible and customizable nature. They
might be correct: Allowing teams to pick-and-choose the necessary tools to
complete projects is the key to resolving this issue. Additionally, IT admins
would rejoice if end-users reverted to working in a controlled, secured
environment. That’s what we call a win-win situation.


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