One of the greatest challenges facing today’s increasingly decentralized business organization involves securing corporate information housed in internal sharing systems when it becomes necessary to share that information with parties outside the corporate firewall. Much of this information is business critical or proprietary and must not only be managed efficiently, but also stored, shared and tracked securely.
Over the last ten years, companies have increasingly adopted SharePoint™ as a platform to facilitate their internal collaboration needs. SharePoint allows employees across the enterprise to connect, to engage with other team members, to share ideas and to collaborate with colleagues in real time. Over the years, SharePoint has evolved and matured from a simple document sharing platform to being utilized as one of the most important enterprise platforms within many organizations, essentially reinventing the way people work together. Today, SharePoint is Microsoft’s most successful server software product with over 65,000 companies deploying it and with over 125 million individual users. But, SharePoint was never designed to be deployed as an extranet application; it simply does not have the functionality necessary for securely sharing confidential content with outside parties.
Companies in many different industries using SharePoint as an intranet are realizing that extranets are the next real challenge. But extranets raise critical security and privacy concerns that IT must address.