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How BlackBerry is Defining the Role of File-Centric Security in Remote Work


The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed some harsh realities about enterprise security. First, a secure perimeter, especially in the face of a shift to distributed work, is no longer enough. In order to sufficiently protect sensitive assets, security must reach every endpoint within an organization, from devices to IoT-connected sensors. There’s a human side to security as well, and each employee must fully understand the importance of proper security hygiene.

Second, effective communication is key. Employees must feel connected both to their organization and to one another, particularly as they struggle with the challenges of self-isolation. Businesses must be able to reach out to remote staff at a moment’s notice, and take a far more active role in their safety and wellness.

Finally, device and endpoint security no longer fully protects an organization against the full gamut of security threats, especially now that collaboration occurs far outside the workplace, beyond even the most distant endpoints. Businesses, if they are to be truly secure, cannot exclusively focus their attention on systems and networks – they must also protect data, and do so in such a way that it does not interrupt workflows.

For this, BlackBerry relies on its own secure, enterprise-grade file sharing platform, BlackBerry® Workspaces.

With file-level encryption and embedded digital rights management (DRM) technology, BlackBerry Workspaces facilitates seamless collaboration between both internal and external stakeholders. Through Workspaces, BlackBerry retains ownership over and control into its most important internal data, keeping it out of the hands of unauthorized parties without requiring complex authentication or restrictive security measures. This allows BlackBerry to more freely share data which it might otherwise have to restrict to in-person presentations, such as product roadmaps and strategy decks.

“BlackBerry has always shared a great deal of information both internally and externally,” explains Jeff McDonald, Senior Director of the BlackBerry Network Operations Center (NOC). “With so many people working from home due to COVID-19, that level of collaboration represents a potential security risk. BlackBerry Workspaces helps us address that risk – we retain complete control of our most important data, while also providing everyone with the most up-to-date version of each file.”

BlackBerry’s Network Operations Center uses Workspaces extensively to share information about service incidents with its clientele, keeping that information both secure and readily-available. The platform is also used for collaboration across multiple other departments within the organization. Finally, it provides a layer of defense against ransomware attacks through its selective rollback feature, whilst its auditing functionality also provides a valuable tool for compliance with regulatory frameworks like the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

“The biggest strength of BlackBerry Workspaces is that it provides a level of confidence and assurance that your data remains under your control, regardless of how it’s shared and with whom,” explains McDonald. “We’re seeing more and more BlackBerry users across the organization adopt the platform for secure collaboration. Not only does it allow them to do their jobs better, it ultimately provides us with feedback around usability and enhancements that helps us further differentiate BlackBerry Workspaces from other solutions on the market.”

Whether collaborating on strategy with internal stakeholders, sharing marketing documents with sales professionals, or distributing root cause analyses to clients, Workspaces helps BlackBerry stay in control of its most important data, no matter where that data ends up.

Read the full case study here.

Alex Willis

About Alex Willis

Alex Willis serves as the Vice President, Global Technical Solutions at BlackBerry.