NTP Tackles Secure BYOD File Sync

By Pedro Hernandez

NTP Software, a Nashua, N.H.-based storage software specialist, unveiled a new product that services the remote file access needs of mobile workforces with the data security and compliance requirements of enterprise administrators.

The platform, dubbed Universal File Access (UFA), may look like any another cloud storage solution at first glance, but it goes much deeper in alleviating the data security concerns of IT managers, asserts NTP CEO Bruce Backa. "Conceptually, at the surface level, it looks like sync and share," he said.

While consumer-grade cloud file storage solutions are the bane of security-conscious organizations, users are clamoring for them, noted Backa. What is an enterprise storage software maker to do?

Create a cloud-enabled file sync and share platform that is the "same on the surface but the opposite in reality," said Backa. He boasts that under UFA, data is "captured and secured, not shared among all of your devices."

Instead of placing copies of files in the cloud, Backa informed that Universal File Access uses Microsoft's Azure cloud infrastructure purely "as a transport and not as a repository." He added that Azure isn't strictly a requirement; the platform supports other cloud providers.

According to the NTP, UFA consists of the following components:

  • Cloud Connector – Connects internal storage hosts with BYOD Manager. Offers Windows Active Directory support along with controls that can limit the size, quantity and type of file data sent over the platform.
  • BYOD Manager – Connects end-user devices and provides flexible caching options, proxies Active Directory security and aggregates communications.
  • BYOD Suite – Client software that allows end users to upload and delete file data. Provides shut down and data-wiping capabilities for lost and stolen devices.

Additionally, UFA helps smartphone and tablet users make the most of their data plans and avoid overages by employing a "fairly clever technology," said Backa. NTP's tech compresses and encrypts all data that is transported over the platform. "The objects that we move around are smaller and are safe," alleviating two big IT concerns, he added.

From an IT perspective, NTP's software can "elevate mobile devices to the paradigm of the corporate desktop," vastly simplifying management and security tasks while accommodating the demand for BYOD, boasted Backa.

NTP stuck the right balance between BYOD, data manageability and file security, according to Enterprise Strategy Group senior analyst Terri McClure. "As more and more organizations embrace the benefits of this 'Bring Your Own Device' environment, they do so at the peril of having their data floating around unsecured and incurring substantial risk that it may be accidentally or intentionally accessed by unauthorized persons," she said in press remarks.

"NTP has developed an eloquent solution with its Universal File Access solution that allows organizations to leverage their existing storage infrastructure while safely taking advantage of new opportunities created by the BYOD movement," concluded McClure.

NTP Software will be demoing UFA in Las Vegas at EMC World 2013 on May 6th though the 9th.

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at InfoStor and InternetNews.com. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.

This article was originally published on April 30, 2013