Case Study: Emerson College Strengthens Data Security with Zenphi

Education Use Cases , zenphi Use Cases

The Challenge:

Lack of auditing capabilities, tedious tasks of manual identification and notification of users having access to files created by another user who's been suspended; native GAM capabilities didn't allow to solve the problem.

The Outcome:

Improved security posture, enhanced IT Department efficiency (40 to 50 hours per workflow saved by reducing manual workload, errors eliminated completely); operational cost reduction and employee satisfaction increase.

Industry: Education |  Using Zenphi for: externally or domain-wide shared files and folders in Google Drives audit automation, suspended users assets management automation  |  Total impact: 40-50 hours per workflow saved for the IT Department.

Background: Why Strengthening Data Security

Emerson College, a prestigious institution known for its programs in communications and the arts, was facing challenges in managing data security. With an ever-increasing amount of sensitive information stored in Google Drive, the college recognized the need to bolster its data security measures to prevent potential data leaks and ensure compliance with security protocols. Even though the IT team was heavily using native GAM capabilities, at some point they realized that even this powerful tool needed some enhancement and an added layer of automation to reduce the burden of launching tasks manually. They had an option to script the automation from scratch. Or hire Zenphi to do the job — 8 times faster. The choice was obvious.

Challenges For The College IT Team

Lack of Auditing Capabilities

Emerson College lacked an effective way to audit files and folders in Google Drive that were shared externally or domain-wide, posing significant risks of data breaches.

Identifying and notifying users using files from a suspended user

Identifying and notifying users who accessed files owned by a suspended user was a manual, time-consuming, and error-prone process

Data Management

There was a need to streamline data review, organization, and analysis to support better decision-making.

Workflow automation

The college needed a flexible solution to automate their workflows end-to-end according to internal processes without necessitating changes.

Solution: Choosing The Tool That Empowers Scalability

After evaluating different tools and platforms, Emerson College chose Zenphi as the ideal solution to automate and enhance its data security processes within Google Workspace. Zenphi provided features such as document generation, task assignment, and scheduled runs, along with the flexibility and customization needed to address the unique challenges faced by the college at an affordable cost.

Implementation: Workflows Automated

1. Automated Security Audits

Zenphi automated the auditing of externally or domain-wide shared files and folders in Google Drive, ensuring that any unintentionally shared files were promptly identified and addressed without manual intervention.

2. User Notifications

Emerson College’s IT team built an automated workflow using Zenphi that identifies and notifies users who accessed files from suspended users in the last 60 days. This proactive approach not only prevents data loss but also promotes best practices in data security.

3. Workflow Automation

Zenphi’s comprehensive platform significantly reduced the manual workload for the IT department, saving approximately 40 to 50 hours annually per workflow. This ensured efficient and secure task completion without breaching Google Workspace security best practices.

Results: The Impact Of Automation On Data Security System

  1. Improved Security Posture: With automated audits and notifications, Emerson College significantly improved its data security, ensuring compliance with security protocols and preventing data leaks.
  2. Enhanced IT Department Efficiency: Automation of repetitive tasks improved overall productivity and allowed employees to focus on strategic activities.
  3. Cost Reduction: By reducing the need for manual interventions, the college lowered its operational costs.
  4. Employee Satisfaction: The reduction in tedious tasks led to increased job satisfaction among employees, fostering a more productive work environment.

The New Benchmark For Security

Emerson College’s adoption of Zenphi improved and simplified its approach to data security and workflow management. Though the data security level was already very high, Zenphi enabled the IT department to enhance data security standards and improved Google data loss prevention policies without adding extra workload for employees. By choosing Zenphi, Emerson College not only safeguarded its sensitive data but also set a new benchmark for efficiency and security in the education sector.

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