Protecting Sensitive Corporate Media using an Enterprise Video Platform

It’s no secret that video is being used by more organizations in more ways than ever before. Marketers use it for online campaigns. Learning and development teams use it to deliver online training. Corporate Communications uses it for town hall events and investor briefings. HR uses it for recruiting and onboarding. Sales teams use it for readiness training.

And the research indicates enterprise video adoption is only going to accelerate:

  • Gartner estimates that by 2016, large businesses will stream more than 16 hours of video per worker per month.
  • Palo Alto Networks noted that the amount of video streaming across corporate networks more than tripled in the first six months of 2012.
  • Aberdeen writes that companies who use video as part of their learning curriculum improve their overall achievement of organizational goals.

The problem is that video is still one of the hardest types of content to share across the corporate network.  And this is creating security issues for IT.

Why traditional content sharing doesn’t work for video

If video were like any other content type, employees could simply post it to network file shares or SharePoint sites. There are a couple of unique challenges with business video, however, that often make these options unviable.

First, video files can get big very quickly.  A simple 5-minute “how-to” screencast recorded on an employee’s laptop at 1920×1080 resolution can exceed SharePoint’s default file size limit of 50MB. Thirty to sixty-minute video presentations, like those used in instructor-led training and company town hall events, can go over SharePoint’s maximum file size of 2GB.

Second, some video files aren’t compatible with all of the devices employees use to watch them. For example, Adobe Connect recordings are saved by default as Flash video (.flv) which isn’t viewable on iOS. Similarly, GoToMeeting recordings are saved by default using a custom Citrix video codec which isn’t viewable unless GoToMeeting or the custom codec is installed. So posting the file to an internal file share doesn’t guarantee that other employees will be able to watch it.

How employees work around video sharing challenges, and why IT should be concerned

The challenges of video sharing sometimes lead employees to upload internal videos to external file stores like Dropbox, or public video services like YouTube. From the employee’s perspective, Dropbox helps overcome file size limits with a 10GB maximum capacity. YouTube helps ensure that uploaded videos are encoded to play back on any device. And employees’ familiarity with these services outside of work makes them all the more likely to use them for business purposes.

For IT managers, the use of external online services for video sharing presents a number security and liability challenges including:

  • Authentication and access control – How to block unwanted access to internal videos?
  • Encryption – How to ensure that communication between the client and service is encrypted over the wire?
  • Retention – How to ensure that copies of videos don’t remain on the server after they’ve been deleted?
  • Auditing – How to monitor video uploads, changes, and deletions?

How Enterprise Video Platforms (EVPs) can help

An enterprise video platform (commonly called a “corporate YouTube”) provides employees with an effective video sharing option, and IT with the infrastructure to manage internal videos while complying with corporate security policies.  For employees, EVPs offer:

  • Multi-gigabyte file storage capable of housing HD videos that are several hours in length. This reduces the need to use public file sharing or video services to store internal videos.
  • Video transcoding to automatically convert videos into formats that can be viewed on any device. This alleviates the need to use a publicly accessible video service to ensure device compatibility.
  • A familiar experience using a web-based portal that makes it easy to upload videos one at a time or in batch.

For IT organizations concerned about video sharing security, enterprise video platforms offer:

  • Deployment options to host the system in the cloud or on-premises based on corporate security policies.
  • Integration with corporate identity systems including single sign on (SSO) with existing authentication systems and rolling synchronization of access control lists (ACLs).
  • Encryption of communication between the client and the server, as well as protection against man-in-the-middle (MITM) attacks.
  • Governance of video content, including options for video archiving and permanent deletion.
  • Video analytics and reports that provide administrators with oversight of video and folder activity.

So the next time you’re watching a video of an executive all-hands event, or an internal sales training video, think about the implications of that video being posted to YouTube. Then pick up the phone and give us a call to discuss how Panopto’s enterprise video platform can help your IT staff with concerns about video security and content management.

Published: December 03, 2013