The benefits of Managed File Transfer

Issue 7 2022 Infrastructure, Products & Solutions

Many companies and technology owners are asking the question: why should I invest in a Managed File Transfer (MFT) system when I currently have File Transfer Protocol (FTP) technology that transfers my files successfully?

Before examining the relevance of MFT in the cloud, Blue Turtle Technologies takes a step back and looks at the necessity of MFT compared to a single FTP or SFTP solution.

When we talk about FTP, we refer to the process by which a targeted or specific computer transfers data or files through the Internet/intranet/WAN/LAN. The type and range of files that pass through FTP can range from simple text files, usually known as ASCII files, to more complex data files such as graphics or binary files. Secure File Transfer Protocol (SFTP) acts the same way as the FTP protocol but with added security, and is increasingly being adopted as the standard across file transfer platforms.

The ability to now incorporate all facets of the file transfer processes – from managing, controlling and viewing of associated workflows, security and dependency mappings of file transfers, to providing the flexibility of being able to select a specific security protocol such as SFTP, FTP, HTTPS, AS2 and many more, to align with a company’s file transfer requirements – is called Managed File Transfer.

MFT is a centralised interface that gives you that single-pane-of-glass overview of all your internal and external file transfers, with the assurance that your data is protected at rest and in transit. It adheres to leading encryption standards like Open PGP and AES, allowing companies to transfer data in the cloud or on-premises safely.

The million dollar question is, why should enterprises invest in an MFT solution and what are the advantages of moving to an MFT platform? Enterprises need to shift away from the limitations of standalone FTP platforms to a platform that will enable them to operate more effectively and efficiently, and drive new revenue streams.

The following highlights several of the core reasons why being in control of your file transfers using MFT should be at the top of your decision-making when it comes to a workload automation strategy.

1.MFT platform capability – A platform that securely automates your enterprise file transfers while maintaining data integrity, with complete visibility of all activities pertaining to file transfers and associated workflows, through a centralised and consolidated platform for both internal and external file transfers (external business partners).

2.Platform-agnostic and integrated – The ability to support an array of new platforms and technologies within the cloud and on-premises landscapes – such as AWS S3, FTP, SFTP and AS2 – through native and easily built integrations, is an essential component of successful MFT platforms. Integrating with business workflows will enhance a business to become more event-driven with its file transfers.

3.Governance and compliance – Ensuring that data integrity and governance adhere to FIPS compliance standards, through policy-driven processing rules driven from a single pane of glass for the enterprise’s business and data governance. A robust MFT platform should be able to maintain regulatory compliance through a secure and accessible role-based function, giving authorised users access to historical file transfers and associated business services.

4. Accelerated rate of resolution – MFT transfers can contain critical financial information which needs to be delivered at specific, targeted times. Any delays or issues can have a large financial impact on business, so the MFT platform must be built to proactively monitor in real time, notify and remediate issues automatically before they have a negative impact on business.

5.Ease of use – When selecting an MFT technology, it should come packaged with an intuitive interface catering to your business users. It allows for an accelerated, secure means of transferring critical files that must be delivered on time, without waiting for IT resources to become available. This will accelerate the time to market and give the business the necessary competitive edge.

The majority of enterprises rely on some form of file movement between various applications, systems and platforms. When selecting an MFT solution, companies want a platform that will provide full, instant visibility of all file transfer statuses. This is done through an easy-to-use, intuitive dashboard view that allows IT and business users the freedom to administer and control file transfers based on role-based actions. This allows for the acceleration of business growth and reduces the risk of downtime through built-in automated recovery capabilities.

The ability to orchestrate, automate and secure file transfers with business or application workflows will enhance your business operations’ efficiency and greatly improve business services’ performance.

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