Additionally, and finally, Dropbox for business is being bolstered with new features. The first release of Dropbox for business was nothing more than a large amount of space shared by a bunch of what were still essentially individual accounts, the only difference being the company picked up the tab. If a user left the administrator had no access to their files via the console, and still needed to manage Dropbox on the individual computer level. Over time Dropbox made subtle incremental refinements to Dropbox for business but it still lacked any ability for an administrator to control or audit Dropbox usage, particularly in the event of staff turnover. This is about to change!
The next release of the Dropbox for business console will provide three new features:
1. Sharing audit logs. This feature allows an administrator to monitor all files being shared outside the organisation, and by whom. This is an important defence against information leakage.
2. Remote wipe. Laptop stolen or lost? Employee resigned or, worse, gone rogue? Now administrators can remotely wipe the Dropbox account and files and folders on a specified user's phone and/or computer. When this option is used Dropbox will immediately cease syncing with the device in question and the software will, when able, given it needs to be connected to the Internet, delete the content on the device. In addition, remote wipe will automatically apply when an administrator unlinks a device from the account. The console will show the status of all remote wipes in progress.
3. Account transfer. Employee leaving? Previously, it was a nuisance to manage Dropbox. You would need to log in to the user's computer, as that user, move their files to a portable drive or server file share, and then hand them to another user, if they were to begin looking after those files. In its next release, Dropbox for business allows administrators to effectively and easily reassign one user's files and folders to another user. They will simply appear in the new user's hierarchy - without disrupting any of their existing content. Account transfer will kick in when removing a user, prompting the administrator to assign the files to another person. A choice doesn't have to be made at this point; the user can still be removed and Dropbox will hold onto the files allowing them to be assigned to another person at a later date still.
These are good, positive changes which bolster the utility of Dropbox as a business tool, not simply a tool for individuals.