London, United Kingdom, November 28, 2013 --(PR.com
)-- Responding to the challenge of how to effectively share confidential information with external parties, in 2011 18 London councils in partnership with Capital Ambition set up the ‘Secure Communications with third parties’ project. The approach brought together experts and specialisms from across London in order to select a robust and comprehensive solution that would improve communication and protect sensitive information shared outside secure government networks.
Two years on from the selection of market-leading email and file encryption solution Egress Switch, project co-founder Croydon Council and Egress Software Technologies reflect on the major success of the project and how it has inspired other councils across the country to consider similar collaborative projects.
As in 2011, data security remains a major consideration for Croydon Council, with employees across all departments required to share confidential information with external organisations, including health and social care bodies, service delivery partners and law firms. Prior to deploying Switch, the council had relied on a variety of methods when sharing information with those outside of secure government networks. However, not only did some of these mechanisms lack appropriate levels of security, but as multiple products were being used, it was also difficult to manage and control where the information was being shared.
Using Egress Switch, however, the council has been able to centralise the data sharing process. “Switch has enabled us to establish a clear, council-wide policy for how to send emails securely,” explains Croydon Council’s ICT Project Manager Lauren White. “Over the last two years, Switch has not only streamlined processes for both council employees and third parties, but it has also raised awareness around the importance of data security and information governance.” As Switch can be deployed based upon an individual organisation’s data security policy, users are prompted to apply encryption depending on factors such as message or attachment content and size, as well as domain type and subject heading. Alternatively, this information can be used to automatically enforce encryption, ensuring that organisations can remain protected at all times.
“Moreover, Switch’s audit functionality provides a log of where information has been sent, by whom and who has accessed it,” continues Lauren. “Alongside this, the ability to place limitations on what recipients can do with the information shared with them means that the council remains in control of sensitive information, even after it has left our offices. Consequently, Switch gives citizens, customers, external suppliers and third party agencies the confidence that their information is being sent securely.”
Egress Software Technologies Chief Executive Officer Tony Pepper comments: “We are delighted to see the positive impact that Switch has had for the London Borough of Croydon, as well as for other councils across the capital over the last two years. By working collaboratively to embrace leading-edge technology, London councils, and in particular Croydon, have benefitted from a comprehensive secure data exchange solution that protects the information they share externally, as well as providing considerable cost savings and efficiency gains. As a result, a project started by a group of councils in London has now been adopted by over 70% of local authorities across the UK.
“Two years on from this project, we continue to innovate and build upon our security platform so that customers can benefit from complimentary encryption services and unparalleled levels of information assurance. As a result, in October 2013 Switch became the only UK Government CPA Foundation Grade certified email encryption product, which makes it suitable for sharing IL2 and low-threat IL3 data over the internet to government departments, supply chain and third sector organisations. Through on-going innovation and investment in Switch, we are committed to providing the highest level of service to all our customers. In doing so, end-users can continue to protect sensitive data easily, avoiding regulatory fines and unnecessary reputational damage.”
For more information contact Rebecca Bailey – Marketing and Communications, Egress Software Technologies:
Tel: 0207 624 8500
About Egress Software Technologies
Egress Software Technologies is the leading provider of email and file encryption software, offering innovative on-demand data security to enable organisations and individuals in the Public and Private Sectors to share confidential information with third parties.
Combining on-premise and hosted cloud infrastructure with patented key management, Egress Switch provides a unique community-based licensing model called the Egress Trust Network. The Network is made up of paying and free Egress Switch subscribers, who are able to share information securely with one another using a single global identity. Delivered as a fully managed service, the Trust Network has grown virally to over 500,000 members.
Used by organisations around the world, integrated desktop and mobile applications ensure easy-to-use software, designed to aid compliance and streamline user workflow.
About the London Borough of Croydon
With a workforce of about 10,500 staff, including teachers in schools, Croydon Council is the largest employer in the borough, and spending over £900 million per year, the council makes a significant contribution to the local economy. The council comprises three main political functions, the Executive (Leader and Cabinet), Committees and Scrutiny.
The council provides a large number of services for local people, businesses and visitors to the borough, including services for children and adults, and environmental, cultural, sports, housing, planning and benefits services.