The growth and evolution of the managed file transfer industry continues to be a blessing for Ipswitch and our partners.

The acquisition of Sterling Commerce by IBM (article) presents an opportunity for both companies’ customers and prospects to reexamine their challenges around advanced file services. Proprietary technologies and protocols such as Connect: Direct and Network Data Mover (NDM) are inefficient, expensive and difficult to manage. Yet many companies continue to pay excessive licensing and maintenance fees because the cost and effort to replace these technologies have, until now, seemed as expensive.  Furthermore, some partners and ecosystems insist on the usage of legacy file transfer technology because alternatives did not seem to be available.

read more “Ipswitch Steps Up To Replace Legacy Technology After Sterling Acquired by IBM”

A quick summary of key industry happenings:

A) The economic impact of piracy (including software) is *really* not understood: http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-10-423. See pages 15 – 19 of the full report in particular.

I’ve always been skeptical of the piracy claims, good to see someone actually reviewed them. I think it is better for the industry to focus on the valued real customer rather than to fabricate and fret about the unknown and unquantifiable pirate customer.

read more “HTML 5, Memristors and Software Piracy”

It’s great to have a line that’s far above the rest. It’s great to see that in the Magic quadrant, it’s great to see that in a wave, it’s great to see that in any industry report. But what does it all mean? The technology provider I understand that corporate executives like dashboards, spreadsheets, charts and graphs. These are the tools that many of them used to run their businesses day-to-day. But what does it mean to see a spike in the line; or what does it mean to see a drop in the line? The key to any reporting capability is to have solid analysis and analytics. For instance a marketing executive needs to know why the dramatic spikes in news reference volume from some vendors and not others. That same executive would also want to consider why search trends don’t follow news volume.

read more “Looking Deeper Into The Data: Analysis and Analytics”

With the announcement last week that Google is adding file transfer to Google Talk, I had some thoughts.  

1). Are there security challenges posed by the Google Talk news?

These challenges are similar to those we’ve seen with Windows Live, AIM, ICQ, Trillian, Skype and others, which all offer peer-to-peer mechanisms. But unlike these forums, Google – and Google Chat – deserve deeper scrutiny over the ubiquity and consumerization Google brings.

For example, it’s likely that Google Talk, and thus file transfer, will now be included within Google’s free productivity suite, Google Docs – which is frequently used as a means for flexible, faster business collaboration and file exchange

read more “Let’s Talk About Google Talk”

Those of you who visited the Ipswitch File Transfer tradeshow booth at the recent RSA Security Conference were likely asked to fill out a short survey.  When the show ended, we tabulated the survey results and there are some staggering data points that we want to share:

  • 83% of IT executives surveyed lack visibility into files moving both internally and externally
  • Nearly 90 percent of survey respondents admitted to using thumb drives or other external devices to move work-related files
  • 66 percent of survey respondents admitted to using personal emails to send work-related files
  • More than 25 percent admitted to sending proprietary files to their personal email accounts, with the intent of using that information at their next place of employment

Here’s my colleague Frank Kenny, VP of Global Strategy at Ipswitch File Transfer, sharing his thoughts on the survey results.


The key takeaway here is that IT organizations are at a greater risk for sensitive company information ending up in the wrong hands if they don’t know who is accessing company information and how they use/move files, where they send them, and to whom they are sent to.  It’s not enough to secure common data access points or provide tools for some employees.  Rather, true visibility into all file and data interactions enables IT organizations to then actively manage, secure and enforce policies for company information, both inside and outside of the organization.

I participated on a panel discussion at SecureWorld Boston yesterday. The discussion topic was striking a balance between productivity and security and it yielded three thoughts that I would like to discuss in today’s blog.

  1. The notion that our companies are going to employ the same type of security policies that we used over the last 30 years is ludicrous. With the arrival of the digital natives into the workforce, simply assuming that your new knowledge workers can adapt to your existing security policy is a farce.How do you establish security mechanisms for information when the people who use this information and data on a daily basis have a much more radical perception on information security and risk? Most digital natives think nothing of providing personal information via the Internet because there is a firm understanding that the information already exists there. These digital natives have grown accustomed to the idea that you should check your credit report every six months and always look for fraudulent charges when the statement arrives.
    read more “Striking a balance between productivity and security”

Using free online storage and collaboration systems dramatically increases a company’s risk of a data breach.  Many of these tools automatically synchronize desktop folders with folders in the cloud.  Compromised credentials can give hackers easy access to all of a company’s sensitive information.

Companies need to monitor traffic over known P2P ports and over commonly used ones, like 80 and 21.  It’s not just data loss prevention, it’s ensuring that policies that address “what data can be sent to whom” are enforced – regardless of port and security mechanisms.

Most of today’s threats with P2P file sharing come from applications that work in conjunction with cloud services, leaving room for hackers to create desktop onramps for their own use.”

 In a recent case, the FTC found the breach.  The truth is – the companies breached should have found it first.

Many enterprise collaboration tools have browser-based portals set to automatically download documents from specific locations.  Simply changing the default settings away from “My Documents” can prevent employees from unknowingly downloading and installing applications that could increase a company’s risk of a breach.

Multi-enterprise collaborative implementations and deployments can be extremely difficult to benefit from because all too often the companies deploying these solutions overly emphasize the security mechanisms and protocol support. While those aspects are important, the ecosystems around companies are expanding to include smaller partners and Prosumers that need to be managed, provisioned, and have their expectations met. In short, companies will need to spend the time and effort on better managing all aspects of the interactions in their ecosystem.

The agreement between Cleo Communications and Stonebranch is a good step in this direction, but we continue to advise our customers, prospects, and the overall market to strongly consider the visibility, management, and enforcement aspects of any type of integration and collaboration. Much of this partnership seems to be based on technology around providing multiple protocol and security support. I will never underestimate or undervalue the importance of protocols and security mechanisms, but I will always focus on the larger aspects of governance: visibility, management, and consistent enforcement of policies related to security and performance. These are the things that matter. This agreement furthers my strong and publicly stated beliefs that companies are consolidating their approaches to integration and collaboration.

Simply put, there continues to be a high degree of volatility (this impacts the entire marketplace in a positive way) in the managed file transfer market.

Frank: “Hey Dad, before I go off into the world what is the one bit of advice that you would give me?”

Frank’s Dad: “If I had to give you one piece of advice it would be save all your receipts and tax returns for seven years in a file cabinet someplace in the back of your closet.”

Frank: “That’s it?! You mean nothing about women? Nothing about credit? Nothing like own at least one suit and a pair of good shoes?”

Frank’s Dad: “Nope that’s it. Trust me you’ll see…”

Now that I’m older I can give this advice to my son. I can also give the same advice to e-mail administrators, “save all your e-mails, someplace safe, for at least three years… preferably more.”

Now here’s the technology part:

It’s becoming more and more apparent that offloading large file attachments from e-mail using a third-party technology integrated with e-mail servers, requires a rethinking of strategy of e-mail and data archival and storage strategy. read more “I’m not a lawyer I just play one on TV OR getting whipped by the tail of the e-mail offloading”

How does the popular UK tech blogger, Jason Slater, use WS_FTP Professional?

WS_FTP Professional User Interface

In his latest blog post, “Mass Transferring Files with WS_FTP Professional,”  Jason reveals that he’s in the process of migrating his websites to a new dedicated web server.

In order to do this successfully, Jason needs to utilize a tool that transfers his data quickly and securely. That’s where WS_FTP Professional comes into play…

Jason explains that he relies on WS_FTP Professional to get this important job done and that he’s been using “WS_FTP for quite some years and [has] seen the product develop into the essential application it is today.”

To read Jason’s full  post on WS_FTP Professional, please visit his website, Jason Slater Technology Blog.

Frank Kenney, VP of Global Strategy, Ipswitch

Frank Kenney, Ipswitch’s VP of Global Strategy, recently spoke in London at a press conference for InfoSecurity Europe, Europe’s leading information security event which take place on April 27-29, 2010.

Dan Raywood from SC Magazine UK attended this week’s press conference and his article can be seen below:

Problem with the professional consumer is leading to an information security headache
Dan Raywood  January 15, 2010

The culture of the professional consumer, or ‘prosumer’, is leading to increased problems within the workplace.

L. Frank Kenney, vice president global strategy at Ipswitch File Transfer, explained that a ‘prosumer’ is a consumer buyer who purchases an electronic device from personal funds but intends to use it primarily for business rather than consumer applications.

read more “Frank Kenney: Problem with the prosumer is leading to an information security headache”

WS_FTP Professional 12.2 has just been listed as “Windows 7 Compatible” for 32-bit and 64-bit Windows 7 on Microsoft’s official compatibility site.

Official posting on Microsoft’s “Windows 7 Compatibility Central”:
http://tinyurl.com/yguobxo

This means that professionals and IT departments now have a certified compatible and full featured FTP client to use with Microsoft’s most recent operating system.

Ipswitch is a Microsoft Certified Partner and used both the Microsoft Windows 7 “Cookbook” and early access to pre-release operating system software to qualify WS_FTP Professional under both the 32-bit and 64-bit editions of Microsoft Windows 7.  WS_FTP Home, derived from the same code base as WS_FTP Professional, also supports Microsoft Windows 7.