Shadow IT

Identified, understood, and mitigated

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Your organisation’s IT department is responsible for everything IT. That sounds like what you would expect, right? Well, not quite. Buried deep under the floorboards and within the unknown, shadow IT exists within every organisation, and yours is unlikely to be an exception!

Shadow IT refers to all forms of IT that take place outside of your IT department – and, importantly, without their knowledge or control. In short, shadow IT takes place under the radar – with your IT department blissfully unaware.

Instead of your IT department using its knowledge and expertise to choose new hardware and software for staff, with shadow IT, your staff have gone rogue and found their own, and with the increase of remote working and bring your own devices (BYOD), shadow IT is a huge and growing concern.

Why does Shadow IT occur?

Ease of use

Adopting new tech has become increasingly easy with the sheer volume of web and cloud-based technologies and applications available today. No matter who you are, you can easily download and use these tools through a simple web interface with little to no involvement from the IT department. It is only natural for users, that if your process is hard to navigate or existing tools don’t allow employees to successfully fulfil their roles, they will look for alternatives that they feel work better for them – resulting in them circumventing your policies.

Business IT innovation

Innovation is one of the top priorities for almost every organisation, but these requirements often outstrip your IT department’s ability to deliver in the timescales needed. The idea that IT investment projects always come from IT departments themselves is declining rapidly. The result is that users will find their own solutions, and organisations will invest in any IT software or service that supports their innovation efforts.

What does Shadow IT look like?

BYOD: a friend or your worst enemy?

Bring Your Own Devices (BYOD) has many advantages, with the key being that it enables your employees to work as they wish on the device they prefer. However, BYOD also has a darker side. Using personal devices to access any company network increases your security risk hugely, as there are often not appropriate controls and policies in place to keep your organisation safe. This is even more true when personal devices are outdated or use dubious software – a hacker’s dream come true.

Connected but disjointed

With the numbers of remote/hybrid workers growing exponentially, your employees may take it upon themselves to also find new ways to stay connected to their co-workers. The solution? Of course, its new online tools, and users’ favourite applications including Microsoft Teams, Miro, and Trello. However, when one team or department downloads a new tool, the rest are often left wondering if they could benefit from it too. Suddenly, your organisation is left using a wide variety of tools and applications that your IT department has very little or no control over.

Application compliance

Do you know how many applications your organisation truly has? Do you have control over them? Or can your employees install applications and new tools as they wish, potentially making you non-compliant? Daisy’s application compliance service enables you to define and control the type of software applications a device can have installed, allowing your business to minimise the potential of having unwanted or pirated software or malware on your network.

Taking assets into their own hands

Do individual departments handle their own asset management? Or do you use centralised asset management services run by your IT department?

What happens when an employee leaves your organisation? How are the asset and the data managed? An employee will often hand in their laptop and think that’s it. However, weeks or even months later, they can get a call from IT, asking about the laptop. Meanwhile, that department has already issued the laptop to a new employee. In this case, your IT department has no idea how many IT assets they have, where they are, whether something is missing, and most importantly, where any critical business data may be exposing you to potentially serious security risks.

What does Daisy offer to mitigate the risks of Shadow IT?

Daisy can help you identify shadow IT so that you can understand how and why it came about and make informed decisions about what to bring into the fold and address the underlying reasons for each instance of shadow IT to have arisen.

Daisy also provides various solutions to mitigate the risks of shadow IT. These can be specifically designed to meet your challenges and requirements.

Vulnerability Management with Asset Discovery

Vulnerability Management solutions continuously identify, categorise and prioritise the remediation or mitigation of vulnerabilities across your IT infrastructure, but that’s not all. They also detect and inventory all known and unknown assets that connect to your IT environment including on-premises devices and applications, mobile, endpoints, clouds, containers, OT and IoT.

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Microsoft 365 Management

The Microsoft 365 suite of services provides users with a rich set of collaboration tools and business applications that fit the needs of most organisations perfectly. Daisy can manage the environment to ensure the best value and security.

We can provide a flexible approach for managing your Microsoft 365 environment with a choice of enterprise-class support and management packages to fulfil a range of support levels and budget requirements.

Microsoft 365 Management helps mitigate the risks of shadow IT by managing and securing your applications while delivering vulnerability and security updates to these applications.

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Licence Management

Your organisation may have 100 applications, but only 75 with licences. Sound familiar? Daisy can take away the heavy lifting and manage your licences to ensure you have what your business needs and that the licenses are used as they should be.

Licence Management helps mitigate the risks of shadow IT by managing and delivering only approved applications to your workforce.

As well as being a service in its own right, this is also part of our Asset Lifecycle Management offering.

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Image Management

Creation and management of a single image that can be deployed to all devices to allow easier management of the underlying operating system and core applications.

Image Management helps mitigate the risks of shadow IT by creating a standard, secure image across all devices.

As well as being a service in its own right, this is also part of our Asset Lifecycle Management offering.

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Application and Security Patching

Patching is a set of software changes that quickly resolves a bug or security vulnerability in software currently in use. Daisy can manage and package the application for you. We will send it out to anyone that needs to update their application and manage the updates within your business.

Application and security patching helps mitigate the risks of shadow IT by securing, patching, and updating all approved applications that your employees need.

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To discover how Daisy can help your business mitigate the risks of Shadow IT, call our team of specialists on 0344 863 3000