Senior IT leaders are becoming exasperated at younger colleagues' use of shadow IT, especially the use of insecure channels, such as WhatsApp, to transmit sensitive information.
"Most millennials use Messenger," complained a top public-sector IT director as conversation turned to shadow IT and social media. "I'd say, 'Oh, please email me that file' and they'd say, 'No, I'll ping it to you'.
"But I say, 'No don't ping it me, send it by email - that's what I'm used to, and that's what's technically more secure."
This set the tone for a conversation with an unfortunately bleak outlook. After years of trying, no IT chief has found a lasting way to push secure, enterprise-grade messenger or social software to employees.
From Yammer to Skype-for-Business to Google+, nothing is sticking.
Anecdotes included Yammer being swiftly ignored once managing directors begin posting 'inspirational' messages - showing they're watching what's going on and possibly observing lighthearted behaviour - to entire teams routinely sending sensitive documents across WhatsApp.
Even rebranded consumer products with enterprise extensions are running into trouble, with one CIO reporting that they had their head of security pull a recent Skype For Business implementation shortly before launch because it wasn't considered to leave a robust enough papertrail.
"The fact was the technology was more aligned to what it was a couple of years back," said the CIO. "We have to make sure we have a history - we need to contain who is talking to who or what, and why."
Things got more complicated still as a public sector CIO revealed that Office 365 is now to be used as standard for transmitting sensitive data, as it's deemed "sufficiently secure".
The worry here is that the business may be pandering to ease of use for end users, as opposed to locking the information up as fully as it should be.
Enterprise-grade messaging is never going to be as cool as the latest UX-led consumer chat app, but as we move into an increasingly user-led IT landscape, it might be time for consumer application developers to begin offering well-implemented enteprise solutions that could fly off the shelves.
The Computing IT Leaders Dining Club, hosted in association with BlackBerry, was conducted under Chatham House rules, so all names are removed. The next IT Leaders Dining Club is next week. Click here for more details.
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