Shedding Light on Shadow IT: Unveiling the World of Unsanctioned Tools 

In the ever-evolving landscape of technology, businesses have been witness to a phenomenon that could make even the most seasoned IT professional break out in a cold sweat: Shadow IT. It’s the tech equivalent of a covert operation, where employees clandestinely employ unsanctioned software and applications to streamline their work processes. A clear nightmare for cyber security.


65% of experienced remote workers admit using unsanctioned tools – Beezy, 2021


Enter Dilaco’s newly developed AppScan, armed with the power to ferret out these hidden tools and bring them into the open. In this article, we’ll dive into how Dilaco’s AppScan can help companies unearth shadow IT, opening the doors to healthier, safer alternatives. 


As reported by Gartner, in major corporations, approximately 30% to 40% of the total IT budget is spent on shadow IT.


Picture this: a diligent employee stumbles upon a shiny new tool that promises to make their job a breeze. They download it, tuck it into a corner of their workstation, and use it without IT’s knowledge or approval. It might be a nifty file-sharing app, a collaborative platform, a calendar assistant, … It can be anything. From their perspective, they’re simply getting the job done more efficiently. But from an organizational standpoint, this can create a digital Pandora’s box of security vulnerabilities, data leaks, and compliance headaches. 


According to Torii’s 2022 SaaS Visibility and Impact Report, 69% of IT executives consider shadow IT as a top concern.


Cue our protagonist – the ingenious application designed to pull back the curtains on this digital drama. With its ability to compile a comprehensive inventory of all installed software and applications on PCs, it acts like a digital detective, spotlighting even the most elusive shadow IT tools. 

Nice, but most employees don’t even have the necessary rights to install new software on their PC and there are other tools out there that can make an inventory of the installed programs and applications. So why use Dilaco’s AppScan? Well, the real pain is the SaaS platforms used in a browser without installing anything. And that’s where Dilaco’s Appscan makes the difference. It not only discovers what’s installed on a PC, it also reads active browser tabs, capturing information about SaaS platforms like a cyber-savvy Sherlock Holmes. This treasure trove of information arms IT teams with all the insights they need to regain control. 

Uncovering shadow IT is akin to finding a treasure map; the real adventure begins when we dive into the reasons behind its existence. Dilaco’s Appscan provides you the necessary information to initiate a dialogue. Remember, those employees aren’t shadowy villains – they’re often just resourceful individuals trying to get things done. By fostering open conversations with end-users, companies get insights into why these tools are being used. 

It’s important to approach these discussions with empathy, curiosity, and an open mind. Instead of reprimanding users, organizations can ask the pivotal question: “Why did you turn to this tool?” Perhaps it’s because the approved alternatives are cumbersome or outdated. Maybe the user wasn’t even aware of the approved tools. This is the moment to introduce the notion that IT isn’t an adversary, but a partner in finding solutions that work for everyone. 

Shadow IT might sound like a cloak-and-dagger tale, but it’s a very real challenge that businesses face in today’s tech-driven world. With Dilaco’s brand new AppScan as the guiding light, companies can unveil the world of unsanctioned tools as well as online platforms and initiate meaningful conversations with their workforce. By embracing user-centric approaches, educating users, and presenting safer alternatives, organizations can transform shadow IT from a nightmare into a valuable opportunity for growth, collaboration, and enhanced cybersecurity. Remember, it’s not about extinguishing the innovative spark; it’s about redirecting it towards a safer, brighter path.





This article was brought to you by:

Willem Magerman
CTO/Cybersecurity Specialist
Get in touch


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