Reasons why Dropbox is not suitable for Business

Cloud storage today.

Cloud File Sync and File Share is a widespread discussion we have with businesses. I understand, when you are starting up a business, you implement systems quickly to allow you to progress with the daily operation of your business.

Business owners very often overlook the importance of their business data integrity and security, but hopefully today you take something away from this post which will justify you to transition out of using Dropbox.

It goes without being said that as time progresses the requirement for a File Sync & File Share service is much a need in your workplace.Enter your text here..

Did you know...

Did you know that Dropbox was initially a simple File Sync / File Share solution for consumers without any effort to address team-based scalability, collaboration or security features which are all required for businesses today ?

Initially, Dropbox did not support centralised admin controls which put the individual user in charge of file access rules. What this means is that everyone has the same access as each other.

While some IT controls were added later to Dropbox Business (also known by the deprecated name Dropbox for Teams), IT still does not have enterprise-grade visibility required to monitor files, documents, users, not to mention policies to control them.

Dropbox is good, just not good for business

Before I begin going over my findings with Dropbox’s File Sync solution let me say why you may want to continue using Dropbox for non-business related reasons like below.

  • Music
  • Pictures
  • Videos
  • Non-personal document ( passports, drivers license)
  • Non-business documents.

For the reasons listed above I do agree Dropbox may be an ideal service for you.

Since you are reading this post, I want to get in real deep by dissecting Dropbox and going over 33 reasons why you should consider a different option than Dropbox for your business day to day operations.

Lets begin!

  1. Dropbox happens to be one of the top 10 blacklisted apps for iOS and Android devices on corporate enterprise firewalls.

  2. Dropbox uses the ‘rent-a-server’ approach and relies on Amazon S3 to store and transfer your files. Relying on a third party arguably increases the risk of a security breach. They also wont be able to tell you where your data is or how your data is transferred.

  3. It happens to be that Dropbox uses Data deduplication in order to store less data and reduce storage costs. Data deduplication means that Dropbox scans each of your files and if it detects that the same file is stored on their server, even when owned by another company or individual, they just keep the original, not your copy. Can’t guarantee data integrity through restricted Data deduplication.

  4. Simple encryption scheme is used by re-using the same keys to encrypt files belonging to different customers. ​

  5. Dropbox servers (via Amazon) are only in the United States. Users, particularly in Australians businesses are concerned about US privacy laws and aren’t given the option of another location to store their files. Jurisdictional diversity is not an option.

  6. Dropbox users are still receiving reams of spam to their Dropbox specific emails after a data breach last August 2017. In the second breach, an employee’s email account was hacked and a file containing customer contact details was stolen. Can’t keep spam from attacking your e-mail or your data safe from hackers.

  7.  Only the last 10 deleted files are available, which usually isn’t enough. Can’t restore most deleted folders and files (even from the web interface).

  8. Restricted to not being able to create secure public links through password protection, expiration timers, and PDF download policies

  9. Commenting to shares around projects, folder, and files is not supported.

  10. Office files on your mobile device using an integrated secure mobile app is not supported.

  11. Dropbox wont let you annotate any file type on your mobile device using an integrated and secure mobile app.

  12. No add on available that lets you upload files to projects or folders using e-mail.

  13. Versions of files older than 30 days are not retained

  14. Dropbox does not support features that allow you to lock files or alert other users that you’re working on a file. No mechanism to lock an active user.

  15. It wont allow you to use full-text search of files to help you find relevant documents.

  16. Dropbox cannot provide PCI compliance for a business that need to work with the payment card industry.

  17. Dropbox does not allow you to  organize your shares based on roles of functional groups, nor control access policies.

  18. Dropbox does not provide detailed and granular auditing of service access by a user, device, agent, and admin role records.

  19. Dropbox won't provide detailed and granular auditing of projects by folder, file, comment, private link, and public link records.

  20. Dropbox wont allow you to prescribe sophisticated password policies based on life-cycle, complexity, and other thresholds.

  21. Dropbox does not allow you to set user session policies based on timeouts or cookie controls.

  22. Dropbox does not support IP Address whitelisting to integrate with corporate VPNs or control access from remote devices.

  23. Dropbox does not support global team-level policies on use of public links, locking files, and remote access.

  24. Mobile Device Management (MDM) / Mobile App Management MAM are not supported.
    Policies such as requiring access codes, adding, creating, and editing content from mobile devices, and blocking 3rd party mobile apps from accessing files in a secure container.

Conclusion 

Dropbox has grown to become a successful Software as a Service (SaaS) company with 1 billion files saved everyday. 

Drew Houston, the founder and CEO of Dropbox invented Dropbox by mistake. He talks about his experiences with forgetting his USB stick at home very frequently so he decided to store the files on a server and run script to be able to access them remotely. 

It is fair to say that Dropbox has been the leading brand behind cloud storage but the question remains, Is Dropbox suitable for business ?
This will depend on your requirements and how much data security mean to you.

We strongly believe that Dropbox is a great solution for home use but simply falling short for security features to support your business operations.

What do we recommend ? Please stay tuned for a detailed review.

If you have any comments or thoughts feel free to share them below.

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