A boat in Soderhammns

Risky, unsecure file sharing inspired this government. Here’s why.

Johanna Winqvist

Johanna Winqvist

Microsoft, Modern Workplace

Read Time, 2 min.

“This file is too large to send.”

We’ve all done it. When time is of the essence, and a large file won’t go where we want it to go, risky public file-transfer methods are suddenly a very appealing option. Security goes out the door in place of convenience. For local governments this creates a systemic problem, and huge security risks. Söderhamn’s local government, overseeing a coastal region in Sweden, decided not to rush to ban this behaviour but take lessons from why it was occurring. Then, turning to modern cloud technology, they sought to close the productivity gap causing the unsecured practices in the first place.

Söderhamn is made up of around 500 small Swedish islands, dotted along its coastal mainland. Famed for its historic ‘blue hills’, another historic asset garnered much less fame―an ageing on-premises infrastructure causing a slew of productivity issues. With new GDPR laws looming over all government practices like an overzealous watchdog, the status quo could no longer be maintained and a new way of working had become vital.

The benefits

With 2,500 full-time employees, overseeing everything from education to healthcare, sensitive documents were being regularly shared with file-sharing tools, email and, shockingly, written down. Acknowledging that these practices were occurring due to a gap in the available infrastructure and software to do their jobs safely, Söderhamns Kommun turned to the built-in security and productivity tools found in Microsoft 365 to give employees a secure environment to communicate and innovate.

“We saw the benefits of what they were doing. We didn’t want to ban people from using data in ways they shouldn’t, because it was much more convenient. We had to provide a solution and an environment where people didn’t have to come up with their own ways of doing things.”

Read the full customer story here.

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