Although you may be using it at home to store your family photos and other files, you may be concerned and asking is Dropbox secure for business use.
Because so many people use Dropbox for personal use, it has made its way into the office, which can be a security risk if it's not used properly.
Here, we'll discuss what Dropbox is, whether it’s secure (especially for confidential files), and the different types of plans suitable for your business.
What Is Dropbox And How Is It Used?
Dropbox is essentially a cloud storage service that makes it possible for you to backup or share files. It's one of many services that have made their way into the workplace.
To use Dropbox, you must first download the software onto a PC or Mac. Then, you can create folders with files and sync them to Dropbox online. You can also access the files on your computer's hard drive, and share folders and files with other Dropbox users, which makes it easy to collaborate.
One of the biggest benefits of Dropbox is that you can access your files from any device, as long as it has an internet connection.
Is Dropbox Secure For My Business?
The good news is, in recent years, Dropbox has become much more secure, allowing its business use to be a viable option. For example, in 2012, Dropbox introduced two-step verification and it's become a fully encrypted service.
Dropbox also allows you to self-destruct certain files after you share them with others, making it possible to meet compliance regulations.
Dropbox is also now Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH) compliant, meaning it has met the standards to be safe for healthcare companies.
While it's up to your company to comply with the requirements, Dropbox initiates a Business Associate Agreement (BAA) to meet legal requirements.
To comply with HIPAA and HITECH, Dropbox offers the following:
- Security Information And Event Management (SIEM)
- Data Loss Prevention (DLP)
- Identity Management
So, is Dropbox secure for business? Generally, yes. While your business may not need HIPAA compliance, the fact that Dropbox has obtained approval for some of the strictest of regulations shows that it can be trusted for many other business types as well.
However, nothing is 100% secure. It's important you set up your account to protect your business and your privacy. We’ll get to that later.
Is Dropbox Safe For Confidential Files?
Dropbox has implemented a lot of safety features that make your files more secure. Among the multiple layers of protection include:
- Data Encryption: AES-256 encryption, which is the same security used by banks and governments to protect their data. Data encryption makes it so Dropbox employees can't access your files.
- Two-Step Verification: This makes it even more difficult for a third party to access your account. Two-step verification requires an additional step to access your account. When you sign in to Dropbox, it will prompt you for a code that's sent to your phone or a device you have listed in your account. You can receive this code through either a text message or an authenticator app.
- Secure Sockets Layer (SSL/Transport Layer Security (TLS): This makes it even more difficult for hackers to intercept data while it's on its way from our servers to your computer or mobile device.
- Regular Tests: Dropbox further protects against attacks by consistently testing for security vulnerabilities.
- Customer Privacy Protection: Dropbox doesn't scan your files for keywords to display targeted ads as many other companies do.
- You Must Have a Link: Public files can only be viewed by those who have a link to the file(s).
- Company Security: Dropbox offers security audits for business accounts that are required to undergo third-party assessments every two years. The audits show compliance with HIPAA, HITECH, and other security laws.
How To Make Dropbox Secure For Your Business
Now that you know the features that can help keep your files safe, here are things you should be sure to implement on your side to keep your business secure:
- Implement The Two-Factor Authorization: This feature is something that needs to be turned on and is not automatic. To turn it on, go to Dropbox's website and click on Preferences. Once you're there, go to the Security tab and check the box that says Two-Step Verification. You'll also need to enter a cellphone number so Dropbox can text you the verification code.
- Monitor Who Has Access To Your Files: Once you open your Dropbox Business account, go to the Admin section of Dropbox's website. From there, you can see who has access to your files. Monitor the number of people who have access to your files and delete those who don't need access anymore.
- Regularly Review Shared Link Activity: When you share a link with others, there is a list of IP addresses that have accessed the files*. You can see who has viewed your files by going to the Admin page and clicking on the Sharing section. Once you're there, click on Manage sharing and you'll see a list of IP addresses that have accessed your files.
- Use Strong Passwords: Make sure you have a strong password that no one can guess. Change it every 60 days and make sure it's difficult for anyone to guess.
- Multiple Devices: Have your files backed up on multiple devices and do not store all of your information on one device.
What Is The Difference Between Dropbox Business Vs Personal?
The main difference between Dropbox's personal and business plans is the storage space each plan offers. Personal accounts offer 2GB of free storage, while business accounts offer anywhere from 3GB to unlimited storage.
The number of users is another difference. A regular personal account allows only one user (family accounts allow six), while the business accounts are meant for an unlimited amount of team members, and you are charged based on how many users you'll have.
Other features of Dropbox business that aren't included in personal plans include:
- branded sharing
- traffic and insights
- file locking
- document watermarking
- shared link controls
- account transfer tool*
- HIPAA compliance*
- viewer history*
- admin console*
- multi-team admin login*
- company-managed groups*
*with most business plans
Want To Improve Your Company's Network Security?
Even with the security features Dropbox offers, you still have to do your part. If you own a company, it's a good idea to incorporate Managed IT services to be sure you're using the best security measures for your company.
A professional IT team will be able to implement a security plan to address your company's specific needs, such as mobile device management and data encryption. We can also provide cybersecurity and network security solutions as well as monitor your network to keep it safe from hackers, viruses, malware, spambots, and other threats.
Allowing professionals, like Globalquest Solutions, to handle your IT services allows you to focus on growing your business while having peace of mind that your data is secure.