Browse Definitions:
Definition

shadow app

Contributor(s): Matthew Haughn

A shadow app is a software program that is not supported by an employee's information technology (IT) department.

In the past, shadow apps were often installed locally by impatient employees who wanted immediate access to software without going through normal corporate channels. With the growth of software-as-a-service (SaaS) and cloud computing, however, the meaning has expanded to include third-party consumer software that is accessed over the Internet.

Skype, Lucidchart, Dropbox, Google Spreadsheets, Docusign and CloudOn are all popular shadow apps. Although many shadow apps can improve productivity and collaboration with little or no financial cost to the company, their use comes with risks. If an employee accesses a cloud app with his personal account, for example, corporate data may be put at risk or even lost if the employee leaves the company. Shadow apps can also cause bandwidth issues on the corporate network, slowing things down and impacting everyone's productivity.

To prevent problems, an IT department should have a service audit process in place to inspect outbound packets and verify ownership of company-owned services in the cloud. The organization should also have policy in place that requires employees to use corporate accounts for web-based applications and restrict network privileges so end users cannot install software locally. If a large group of employees is using a particular cloud app, the IT department should consider providing the service in house and finally, the IT department should educate employees about the value of corporate data and the risks that shadow apps present.

See also: shadow IT, rogue IT

This was last updated in August 2014

Continue Reading About shadow app

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

Powered by:

SearchCompliance

SearchSecurity

  • password

    A password is an unspaced sequence of characters used to determine that a computer user requesting access to a computer system is...

  • adware

    Adware is any software application in which advertising banners are displayed while a program is running.

  • botnet

    A botnet is a collection of internet-connected devices, which may include PCs, servers, mobile devices and internet of things ...

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • call tree

    A call tree -- sometimes referred to as a phone tree -- is a telecommunications chain for notifying specific individuals of an ...

  • mass notification system (MNS)

    A mass notification system is a platform that sends one-way messages to inform employees and the public of an emergency.

  • disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS)

    One approach to a strong disaster recovery plan is DRaaS, where companies offload data replication and restoration ...

SearchStorage

  • data migration

    Data migration is the process of transferring data between data storage systems, data formats or computer systems.

  • compact disc (CD)

    A compact disc is a portable storage medium that can be used for recording, storing and playing back audio, video and other data ...

  • secondary storage

    Secondary storage is used to protect inactive data written from a primary storage array to a nonvolatile tier of disk, flash or ...

SearchSolidStateStorage

  • SSD RAID (solid-state drive RAID)

    SSD RAID (solid-state drive RAID) is a methodology commonly used to protect data by distributing redundant data blocks across ...

  • Tier 0

    Tier 0 (tier zero) is a level of data storage that is faster, and perhaps more expensive, than any other level in the storage ...

  • PCIe SSD (PCIe solid-state drive)

    A PCIe SSD (PCIe solid-state drive) is a high-speed expansion card that attaches a computer to its peripherals.

SearchCloudStorage

  • RESTful API

    A RESTful application program interface breaks down a transaction to create a series of small modules, each of which addresses an...

  • cloud storage infrastructure

    Cloud storage infrastructure is the hardware and software framework that supports the computing requirements of a private or ...

  • Zadara VPSA and ZIOS

    Zadara Storage provides block, file or object storage with varying levels of compute and capacity through its ZIOS and VPSA ...

Close