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A review of the current Managed File Transfer vendor landscape

Best Enterprise Managed File Transfer vendors

A review of the current MFT vendor landscape

There’s a lot of out of date or inaccurate comparisons of enterprise Managed File Transfer (MFT) vendors online. This makes it difficult for businesses to research MFT vendors and select the right solution for their requirements. In a recent blog post, for example, we explained how far out of date the ten-year-old Garter MFT Vendors Magic Quadrant was.

This blog post gives an impartial overview of current enterprise Managed File Transfer vendors. But firstly, why should you listen to us? Having dealt solely with MFT for over 15 years we have a lot of experience. In fact we’re often asked to assist vendors with product research and development. We are also providers and developers of the only vendor-independent training programme: The Certified File Transfer Professional (CFTP).

The fragmentation of MFT

Managed File Transfer (MFT) is a technology that provides the secure transfer of data in an efficient and reliable manner. Unlike traditional file transfer tools, such as FTP and scripting, MFT core functionalities include the ability to secure files in transit and rest, and reporting and auditing of file activity. What also differentiates MFT from other forms of infrastructure and integration technologies is its unique focus on managing the transfer of large file sizes and volumes.”
Gartner IT Glossary

Over the last decade, file transfer solutions have fragmented into the following categories:

  • Electronic File Sync and Share, or EFSS: This allows document collaboration and secure sharing of files between people;
  • ‘Extreme’ or fast file transfer: Very large files and data sets can be transferred quickly and securely, using a combination of UDP and TCP protocols;
  • Managed File Transfer (MFT): Primarily chosen for its automation capabilities, frequently coupled with a server and proxy.

The extension of Managed File Transfer

In recent years MFT vendors have extended the reach of their products to include an increasing number of end-points and integration options. This includes:

  • Cloud connectivity, both for storage and SaaS applications;
  • Some data transformation capabilities;
  • Extended SOAP and REST APIs.

These developments have propelled MFT to become the file delivery hub of a business and an alternative option for businesses considering an iPaaS solution. It combines on-premise with external connectivity to create hybrid business processes with governance and visibility.

Of course, different MFT vendors are at different points on this journey. If you would like to find out more, please get in contact and we can provide advice. We can also advise you on previous development release schedules and other factors that will ensure you back a Managed File Transfer vendor that will meet your future needs too.

Ultimately there is no ‘best Managed File Transfer vendor’, just the best one for your individual requirements.

Our top four enterprise Managed File Transfer vendors

In alphabetical order, our top four MFT vendors are as follows. This is based on functionality, ongoing development, release schedule, roadmap and vendor support.

 

Coviant Diplomat

Coviant Diplomat MFT is benefiting from a new lease of life under Greg Hoffer, the recently appointed CEO. The product is considered by the analysts as the value player in the market, strong on enterprise integration, cross platform and with an increasing number of application and cloud integration points. The company was formed in 2004 and according to LinkedIn has 11-50 employees. Coviant is based in San Antonio, Texas, USA.

Globalscape EFT

Globalscape have recently refocused all their efforts on EFT Server. A strong automation platform for Windows, 2020 will see the release of additional GDPR compliance capabilities and automation options. Globalscape was formed in 1996 and has 51-200 employees according to LinkedIn. The CEO is Robert Alpert, it is listed on the NYSE and the organisation is based in San Antonio, Texas, USA.

HelpSystems GoAnywhere MFT

GoAnywhere MFT is a cross plaform application, strong on cloud connectivity, with multiple out of the box connectors available. They bring out a major new release each year. Linoma, developers of GoAnywhere, were acquired by HelpSystems in 2016, who were formed in 1982 and has 501-1000 employees according to LinkedIn. The recently promoted CEO is Kate Bolseth and the organisation is based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA.

Ipswitch MOVEit

Ipswitch was acquired by Progress in 2019 for +$200m. Ipswitch acquired Messageway in 2010 to add integration and EDI to their portfolio, which now includes three separate file transfer product lines. Ipswitch was formed in 1991 and has 201-500 employees. The CEO is Michael Grossi and the organisation is based in Burlington, Massachusetts, USA.

Enterprise Managed File Transfer vendor landscape

Vendor Product Formed No. of employees CEO Head Office
managed file transfer vendors Diplomat MFT 2004 11-50 Greg Hoffer Wellesley, Massachusetts, USA
managed file transfer vendors EFT 1996 51-200 Robert Alpert San Antonio, Texas, USA
GoAnywhere 1982 501-1000 Kate Bolseth Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
managed file transfer vendors MOVEit 1991 201-500 Michael Grossi Burlington, Massachusetts, USA
Vendor Product Formed No. of employees CEO Head Office
managed file transfer vendors Harmony 1976 201-500 Mahesh Rajasekharan Rockford, Illinois, USA
managed file transfer vendors Cornerstone 2000 11-50 Micheal J Ryan Annapolis, Maryland, USA
managed file transfer vendors Secure Transport 1996 1001 - 2500 Patrick Donovan Puteaux, France
managed file transfer vendors Oracle MFT 1977 10001+ Safra Catz Redwood City, California, USA
Vendor Product Formed No. of employees CEO Head Office
managed file transfer vendors JSCAPE MFT 1999 11-50 Van Glass Miami, Florida, USA
managed file transfer vendors Business Integration Suite MFT 1987 501-1000 Bernd Seeburger Bretten, Germany
managed file transfer vendors Serv-U 1996 1001 - 5000 Kevin B. Thompson Austin, Texas,USA
managed file transfer vendors Attunity MFT 1977 201-500 Shimon Alon Burlington, Massachusetts, USA

NEXT STEPS

MFT solutions have very similar features and capabilities, with vendors competing with one another to stay competitive. This makes it more difficult to work out which solution is best for your requirements as product datasheets largely say the same thing. Determining which solution is best is achieved by knowing not what they do but how they do it, the level of detail and complexity, and how they are delivered.

The easiest way for you to identify the right solution for your business is a discovery call with our MFT experts. They will chat with you to fully understand your existing requirements, ensure that you’ve considered what your future needs might be and give you various options in selecting your solution. Call us on 0333 123 1240.

Alternative, use our free comparison tool, which asks the right questions. You enter your requirements, giving as much detail as you can, and our experts will recommend the right solution for your current and future needs and budget. It’s completely free and there’s no obligation to buy through us.

Pro2col in Pink: Race for Life team

Pro2col in Pink: Race for Life team

Pro2col in pink

Three Pro2col ladies are doing the ‘Pretty Muddy’ Race for Life as team ‘Pro2col in Pink‘.

Lindsay, Michelle and Sally will get stuck into this muddy challenge on Saturday 15th June, raising money for Cancer Research UK. The route goes through Poole Park, Whitecliff Recreational Ground and Harbourside, with a variety of muddy obstacles along the way.

Pro2col MD James Lewis said: “The team are passionate about making a difference to our community and to society in general. So alongside of beach cleans and crisp packet recycling, most of the staff are undertaking different challenges in June to help raise money for charity. They are causes very close to their hearts and I’m really proud of their dedication.”

ABOUT RACE FOR LIFE

Cancer survival rates have doubled over the past 40 years. Consistent progress is being made but improvements to technology and ground-breaking work offer new opportunities to find different ways to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer and improve survival rates even further. Help Cancer Research UK improve results even faster.

1 in 2 people will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime. Every single pound you donate makes a difference to Cancer Research UK’s groundbreaking work, so please sponsor us now.

 

MEET THE TEAM

Pro2col in pink

Lindsay Lewis

Pro2col in pink

Michelle Grimaldi

Pro2col in pink

Sally Gates

Secure Mail

Secure Mail

It is very common for staff to share sensitive files via email, risking your organisations security and compliance. Or they need to share files which are too big to attach, so they resort to consumer-grade applications like Dropbox or WeTransfer.

GoAnywhere MFT provides a Secure Mail module, which addresses these challenges. It is a great way for businesses of any size to control and manage sensitive and valuable data exchanges via email to remote or third parties.

In a typical email setup, the servers do not encrypt the email attachment. The GoAnywhere Secure Mail solution allows email attachments to be encrypted and securely transferred. This feature can be accessed either via the Microsoft Outlook plugin or the GoAnywhere HTTPS web interface.

  

Microsoft Outlook plugin

When sending emails using the Outlook plugin, the attached file is not attached to the email itself. It is sent encrypted to the GoAnywhere MFT server and encrypted at rest on the storage. An encoded URL, which can also be password protected, is then embedded into the email body. The recipient can link directly to the stored file or files hosted on and controlled by the GoAnywhere MFT server.

 

GoAnywhere HTTPS client interface

The GoAnywhere HTTPS client interface provides an alternative method to send secure email attachments. The web portal provides a familiar and intuitive interface for users to control and manage this process.

The administration interface allows IT or delegated administrators to manage aspects of the Outlook plugin and secure mail features, giving them control over the size of files attached and enforced settings including: Security controls & protection levels for URL protection, password and certificate delivery.

Address rules allow you to lock down the email domains you can send to or receive from. This level of control is a great solution for business with known trading partners who need that additional level of security.

The Reporting feature provides visibility of activities, while Auditing and Package Manager allow administrators to control the package expiration and maximum downloads for file or files.

Would you like to see GoAnywhere or the Secure Mail module in action? Book a free demo or trial.

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Choosing the right Managed File Transfer protocol

What protocol should I useThis blog post answers your questions about Managed File Transfer protocols. Which are the most widely used file transfer delivery protocols? Which should you be using and how do you identify which solution uses which protocols?

A protocol is the set of rules that determines how files are transferred from one computer to another, through a network. That might be an internal network (from one computer to another within the same network) or more commonly a Wide Area Network such as the internet.

The nature of your data and its destination will determine the right protocol for the transfer. For example, personally identifiable data and credit card information will need a secure protocol.

BASIC PROTOCOLS

FTP
(File transfer protocol)

How can it be used?

Upload/download files
Rename and delete files
Create/delete folders
Execute custom commands on server
Check integrity of files

When can it not be used?

X Secure data at rest
X Secure data in transit (FTPS can)
X Work over just one firewall port
X Provide strong authentication

FTPS
(“FTP Secured” using SSL)

 Secure data in transit
Upload/download files
Rename and delete files
Create/delete folders
Execute custom commands on server
Check integrity of files
 Provide strong authentication

X Secure data at rest
X Work over just one firewall port

SFTP
(“Secure FTP” using SSH)

Secure data in transit
Upload/download files
Rename and delete files
Create/delete folders
 Provide strong authentication
Work over just one firewall port (22)

X Secure data at rest
X Check integrity of files
X Execute custom commands on server

SCP
(“Secure CoPy”)

Secure data in transit
Upload/download files
Work over just one firewall port (22)
 Provide strong authentication

X Rename and delete files
X Create/delete folders
X Check integrity of files
X Execute custom commands on server

ADVANCED PROTOCOLS

HTTP
(HyperText Transfer Protocol)

HTTP CAN ALWAYS
Download files
Work over one firewall port (80)

HTTP CAN SOMETIMES
Upload files
Rename and delete files
Create/delete folders
Execute custom commands on server
Check integrity of files

Secure data at rest
X Secure data in transit (HTTPS can)
X Provide strong authentication

HTTPS
(HTTP Secured with SSL)

HTTPS CAN ALWAYS
✓ Download files
✓ Work over one firewall port (443)
✓ Secure data in transit

HTTPS CAN SOMETIMES
– Upload files
– Rename and delete files
– Create/delete folders
– Execute custom commands on server
– Check integrity of files
Provide strong authentication

Secure data at rest

WebDav

WEBDAV CAN ALWAYS
Download/upload files
✓ Rename and delete files
✓ Create/delete folders
✓ Work over one firewall port (443)
✓ Secure data in transit

WEBDAV CAN SOMETIMES
 Provide strong authentication

Secure data at rest
X Execute custom commands on server
X Check integrity of files

EMAIL PROTOCOLS

SMTP
To send mail

Push files as attachments
✓ Be secured with SSL/TLS
✓ Often uses ports 25, 465 or 587

Pull files from other servers

POP3
To get mail

Pull files from servers as attachments
Delete original email from servers
Be secured with SSL/TLS
Often uses port 995

X Push files as attachments
X Synchronize email folder contents
X Not supported in all email environments
POP3 is becoming obsolete

IMAP
To get mail and sync mail folders

Pull files from servers as attachments
✓ Delete original email from servers
✓ Synchronize email folder contents
✓ Be secured with SSL/TLS
Often uses port 993

Push files as attachments
X Be trusted if its key mailbox is also accessed interactively

Which Managed File Transfer protocol?

Guidance on what constitutes a secure protocol will change, adapting to stay one step ahead of cybercrime. That’s why it’s important to choose a vendor that releases regular product updates. With Pro2col’s free Managed File Transfer comparison service, you submit your requirements via a questionnaire. Our experts compare them against the different solutions and recommend the right product for you. Our experts consistently review the marketplace and only select credible solutions from credible vendors, who provide excellent support and regular software updates.

Managed File Transfer Buyers Guide

Secure online forms and automation

Secure online forms and automation

Businesses need information from their internal users, external customers and suppliers all the time and it is highly likely this will include personal or sensitive data.

It is definitely not appropriate to ask users to share this information over email, but we know that is still common practice for many organisations. Email is not secure, so you risk a breach of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), plus there is no guarantee of delivery. Email cannot support large files either.

Online forms provide a secure, customisable mechanism for your customers, suppliers and internal users to submit information to your business. It is a popular feature of Managed File Transfer systems and can capture any type of information or file size. Fields can also be configured to trigger onward business processes or integrate with internal systems.

To demonstrate the versatility and functionality of secure online forms with automation, let’s look at a use case from the motor insurance industry.

Use case: Motor insurance company

A customer is involved in a collision and needs to claim on their insurance. Using the secure online form, they enter the information required: Policy number, personal details, vehicle information, details of the collision and images of the damage.

Once the data has been received, a number of tasks need to happen to progress the claim.

This is where the technology really comes into its own. Automated actions sitting behind the secure online form, can execute many of these tasks and you can find out more in this video.

Examples of automated workflows

Once the user submits the form, it can trigger a range of automated workflows, such as:

  • Check the policy number meets alphanumeric sequence
  • Validate customer name against policy number
  • Assign claim to a claims handler
  • Automatically input the description directly into the customer database
  • Rename images to a pre-determined format, eg: policynumber_date
  • Move images to the image server
  • Send an automated reply via email or SMS or other business communication platform. The template can be personalised to include the name, assigned claims handler, policy number etc.

All of these processes can take place without any human intervention, demonstrating just how more efficient these labour-intensive tasks can become. You can see how this would suit other industries, such as mortgage brokers, doctors and private healthcare providers, or any outsourced business service, such as HR or payroll.

These are fairly simple use-cases, but there’s no end to the automation capabilities that can be applied. We recently customised secure online forms for a company sequencing hundreds of thousands of anonymised records of biological data. Customised logic built around metadata in mandatory fields in the form triggered the next step in the process.

Can you see how your organisation could benefit from adding secure online forms to your infrastructure? Get in touch for a chat now. Alternatively, complete our Managed File Transfer (MFT) comparison; answer a series of questions about this and other business requirements and our technical experts will recommend the best solution to suit your needs.

Interested in a file transfer solution?

Improve security and efficiency for your clients with online forms and automated workflows

Improve security and efficiency for your clients with online forms and automated workflows

Businesses need information from their internal users, external customers and suppliers all the time and it is highly likely this will include personal or sensitive data.

It is definitely not appropriate to ask users to share this information over email, but we know that is still common practice for many organisations. Email is not secure, so you risk a breach of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), plus there is no guarantee of delivery. Email cannot support large files either.

Online forms provide a secure, customisable mechanism for your customers, suppliers and internal users to submit information to your business. It is a popular feature of Managed File Transfer systems and can capture any type of information or file size. Fields can also be configured to trigger onward business processes or integrate with internal systems.

To demonstrate the versatility and functionality of secure online forms with automation, let’s look at a use case from the motor insurance industry.

 

Use case: Motor insurance company

A customer is involved in a collision and needs to claim on their insurance. Using the secure online form, they enter the information required: Policy number, personal details, vehicle information, details of the collision and images of the damage.

Once the data has been received, a number of tasks need to happen to progress the claim.

This is where the technology really comes into its own. Automated actions sitting behind the secure online form, can execute many of these tasks and you can find out more in this video.

Examples of automated workflows

Once the user submits the form, it can trigger a range of automated workflows, such as:

  • Check the policy number meets alphanumeric sequence
  • Validate customer name against policy number
  • Assign claim to a claims handler
  • Automatically input the description directly into the customer database
  • Rename images to a pre-determined format, eg: policynumber_date
  • Move images to the image server
  • Send an automated reply via email or SMS or other business communication platform. The template can be personalised to include the name, assigned claims handler, policy number etc.

 

All of these processes can take place without any human intervention, demonstrating just how more efficient these labour-intensive tasks can become. You can see how this would suit other industries, such as mortgage brokers, doctors and private healthcare providers, or any outsourced business service, such as HR or payroll.

These are fairly simple use-cases, but there’s no end to the automation capabilities that can be applied. We recently customised secure online forms for a company sequencing hundreds of thousands of anonymised records of biological data. Customised logic built around metadata in mandatory fields in the form triggered the next step in the process.

If you have clients who would benefit from secure online forms with automation, or you would like to add this technology to your product portfolio, get in touch for an informal chat. Just complete our Partnering with Pro2col form.

Do you have a client needing secure online forms right now?
Or would you like to add this technology to your product portfolio?
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