2.5.3 File Sharing
In addition to concerns about data being sniffed across the network, there are also concerns about proprietary data being shared with those not authorized to have it, and with users borrowing others FTP sites to share files with the rest of the Internet.
For example, you may decide that only certain employees can put files up for FTP on your site, because you want files to be reviewed for sensitive material before they are made available on your site.
Similarly, you may wish to limit users ability to upload files into only one or two directories, in order to restrict the locations that can be used by random net users looking for a location in which to store their latest Warez for download by their friends around the Internet.
Another issue with file sharing is that users may go outside the bounds of FTP, to the world of peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing services. Since services like Napster, Gnutella and Kazaa is client based, theyre more difficult for the organization to control than a centralized FTP site.
What if an employee shares their entire hard drive via Napster and their hard drive includes confidential source code? Similarly, what if P2P users are using up a significant portion of your organizations bandwidth? It tends to be challenging to prohibit P2P connections through technology alone (as countless schools could tell you, if you asked them). The best defense is an appropriate use policy, backed up with technology to prevent what you can, and catch as much of the rest as possible.
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