Microsoft Office documents create a raft of metadata that bring with them financial risks and competitive problems with potentially serious consequences
San Francisco, CA (PRWEB) June 16, 2011
Workshare, a leading provider of document collaboration software, today releases a new free paper outlining the many potentially serious risks hidden metadata in documents can pose and the unintended consequences that may result when organizations reveal information that is meant for internal use only. The paper highlights a number of high profile cases where organizations have suffered embarrassment, or worse, when metadata in documents was exposed.
“A Guide to the Dangers of Hidden Information in Documents” points out the types of metadata contained in Microsoft Office documents and the risks these types of metadata may presents such as putting businesses at financial risk and competitive disadvantage, as well as an overview of the conflicting legal opinions about the status of metadata which does ‘leak out.’
Through Microsoft Office, metadata is automatically added to documents whenever a document is created, edited or saved; and author’s actions through the use of such collaboration features as comment and track changes also result in significant amounts of metadata being included. Within a few weeks Workshare will release Workshare Professional 7 which will have enhanced metadata protection features including a simple, one-click protection for email and comprehensive metadata cleaning from PDF attachments sent by email.
While metadata is useful for purposes such as identifying, indexing and managing documents, it is very difficult for companies to identify and remove it before it reveals potentially sensitive information as the document moves between multiple reviewers and recipients. The new whitepaper reports on several widely publicized, high profile cases in which metadata has gotten organizations in serious trouble and recommends that metadata be carefully cleaned and screened, and that the risks of sharing confidential information outside a company’s firewall increases substantially with the rise in use of smartphones and tablets to view, edit and email documents.
“It is important to inform and remind professionals that Microsoft Office documents create a raft of metadata that bring with them financial risks and competitive problems with potentially serious consequences,” said Dan Filby, vice president at Workshare. “Workshare’s solutions help identify and remove metadata so problems can be eliminated. We are pleased to share this important information in the new Guide.”
A Guide to the Dangers of Hidden Information in Documents is available as a PDF download at:
Workshare provides document collaboration software to enable business professionals to accurately create, collaborate and control high-value content more efficiently. More than one million professionals rely on Workshare solutions to increase productivity and safeguard their confidential information, ultimately securing their intellectual property, customer relationships and the organization's reputation. Workshare's comparison and collaboration solutions provide risk management and security to over 18,000 organizations worldwide and easily integrate with line-of-business applications. Stay informed by following Workshare on twitter, http://www.twitter.com/workshareinc, or visit http://www.workshare.com for more information.
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