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Security is one of the most important aspects of any content migration. Security considerations impact migration in a number of ways, summarised simply below;

  • Understand the security in the source.
  • Securing the content during migration.
  • Appropriately applying security in the destination.

This article is concerned with securing the content during migration.

In delivering content migrations we do 4 key things to ensure security;

  • We Understand
  • We Plan
  • We Design
  • We Implement

We Understand

We understand that different organisations, jurisdictions, and content will be subject to differing legislation, regulation, and policy considerations. For example;

  • HIPAA / HITECH
  • PCI
  • EU Model Clauses
  • General Data Protection Regulation
  • Australia Privacy Act
  • ISO
  • Data Residency
  • South Africa’s Protection of Personal Information (POPI) Act

We Plan

It is critical in all content migrations that data should be treated with respect. We work with our clients to agree an appropriate content migration security plan as part of any content migration.

Plans are normally specific to client, source, destination and the nature of the content.

We Design

We design our migration tooling with security at the forefront of considerations.

We design our client’s migration processes again with security at the forefront and reflective of the agreed content migration security plan.

We Implement

We implement security measures across our migration tooling and processes. These will be appropriate to each aspect of the migration, for example;

  • Extract
  • Transform
  • Load
  • Remote Access

Extract

Appropriately secure the extraction process. For example if the source is a cloud based system where https:// has been deemed appropriate for user access then this will likely be appropriate for the extract aspect of the content migration.

Transform

Appropriately secure the transformation process. This may be simple but important measures such as minimising or eliminating the amount of content which is written to any temporary location and ensuring it’s expedient removal.

Load

Appropriately secure the load process. When loading to SharePoint Online for example we communicate to SharePoint using the https protocol and encrypt library content using the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES).

Remote Access

Appropriately secure remote access. If remote access to client systems is required then this will be secured in accordance to the agreed content migration security plan.

In Conclusion

Talk to us about how we can secure your content migration.

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A typical first step in many migration projects is to research, select and procure a migration tool.

Content Migration as a Service (CMaaS) changes this concept. CMaaS also delivers the outcome not just the means to achieve it.

Sometimes CMaaS is a better approach for your scenario.

We have put together some examples of how we find CMaaS has helped our clients which we hope will help you to make the correct choice for you scenario.

Delivery Accelerator

CMaaS typically accelerates migration delivery.

The team must understand the desired outcome so that the CMaaS partner can deliver. This moves decision making to the fore.

You will be working with a delivery partner who has delivered many migrations. Having an experienced partner brings speed, clarity and confidence to decision making. Migration projects can often be about difficult decisions that balance both advantages and disadvantages of a given approach so this can be a significant contribution.

Team Focus

Content migration is typically one part of a larger project.

Invariably the purpose of that overarching project will be to bring a significant improvement or efficiency to the organisation.

Arguably the project team wants to be focused on the creation and delivery of that future and the “one-time” content migration element can be a distraction.

CMaaS permits the team resources to focus whilst a partner delivers the “one-time” content migration element.

Align Perspectives

Different teams and personnel within your organisation will have different perspectives on any content migration project.

An experienced CMaaS partner will understand this landscape and work with your team to align this with the detail of the content migration.

To exemplify this we should consider that content migration is frequently not only concerned with moving content from A to B but also with ensuring that the content migration honours;

  • Use and Consumption, e.g.
    • Continued use and consumption post migration
    • Arrangements for use and consumption during migration
  • Governance, e.g.
    • Permissions
    • Security
    • Retention
    • Disposition
    • Compliance
  • Infrastructure, e.g.
    • Bandwidth
    • Storage

Responsibility for each of these areas is likely split between personnel. A good CMaaS partner will understand both this landscape and also drivers such as regulatory and legislative compliance.

Team Resources

A content migration project can place significant demand upon team resources.

CMaaS reduces this demand.

It is also the case that most content migration projects are a “one-time” deal. Without a migration partner it is likely your organisation will incur the additional learning curve costs of internal or contractor resources only for these skills to be redundant as soon as the project is delivered.

Small Content Migrations

The benefits of CMaaS becomes very acute for small migrations.

For a small migration the cost of the CMaaS engagement may well be similar to or less than the cost of the tooling. When this is set against the background of team resource costs and other factors a strong case is made, commercially, for CMaaS.

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Every business we have ever worked with has content stored in multiple places.

Content consolidation is the act of distilling the number of such repositories down to the minimum and in each case the best for the content concerned.

Consolidation invariably entails migrating content out of and retiring legacy repositories.

We can migrate these repositories for you – http://www.ensentia.co.uk/whatwedo/migration/.

When we label a repository as legacy we should be careful to understand that this means legacy to your organisation. Put a different way a legacy repository may be supported by the manufacturer but your organisation has determined it no longer wants to maintain the system.

Consolidation is achieved by successful execution of one or more migration projects.

Successful consolidation would at least achieve these benefits.

1. Reduce Cost

Once all content has been migrated out of a legacy repository cost can be reduced:

  • Software manufacturer support and licences costs are eliminated.
  • Infrastructure (hardware, power) costs are eliminated.
  • Training costs for users are reduced.
  • Ownership costs such as internal IT costs are reduced.

2. Reduce Risk

With content migrated to a preferred platform risk is significant reduced:

  • Legacy platform risks such as failure, stability, security and data loss are circumvented.
  • Skills (expertise) risks are mitigated.

3. Increase Productivity

Content consolidation normally reflects a productively increase:

  • Single search – Ability to find all content in a single search.
  • Single knowledge set – The requirement to only learn and master a single electronic content management system.
  • Single administration point – Only a single system for which to set permissions and execute other administrative and governance activities.
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We specialise in content migration with a specific focus on migration to SharePoint.

Put simply we help our customers to deliver their Migration Projects by building robust Content Migration Processes leveraging our Content Migration Tooling.

See also http://www.ensentia.co.uk/whatwedo/migration/

Migration Project

Content typically refers to document content (Word; PDF; Excel etc), or HTML presented content (Web Pages). Content could also mean structure (Folders), lists (conversations, tasks, calendars). All content has some form of meta data associated with it.

A need for content migration will normally arise from an overarching project.

Typically such a project would be :

  • A migration project to a new EDRMS, WCM or Collaboration system such as SharePoint.
  • A consolidation project whereby you consolidate to a single EDRMS, WCM or Collaboration system such as SharePoint.

Such a project will have it’s own understood drivers and benefits case.

We believe it is important to recognise that this overarching project is different from the content migration itself as the overall project will address not just content but also people and processes.

The exception to this is an archive project in which the main driver is correctly retaining the content as opposed to actively or extensively working with it. In such a project the element of people and process is reduced and the content migration process comes to the fore.

Content Migration Process

To satisfy the requirements of a migration process a content migration process normally needs to be built or at very least configured.

The process could be simple or complex. In order to facilitate the later we use PowerShell.

The process will undoubtedly migrate content but may also:

  • Configure the destination
  • Deploy structure such as sites, libraries or folders.
  • Deploy meta data such as lookup lists
  • Set Permissions
  • Transform the content
  • Transform the meta data

The process will additionally include:

  • Reporting
  • Reconciliation
  • Tracking
  • Validation

In short the content migration process is tailored to the needs of the project and further ensures all content is correctly transferred and validated.

Content Migration Tooling

Content migration tooling avoids reinvention of the wheel.

Good migration tooling encapsulates all common functionality that your migration process will need so that it can be built more easily and cost effectively.

Professional content migration tooling normally leverages PowerShell scripting for accuracy and repeatability.

We continually develop our own migration tooling so that we can work with you to deliver a very effective Content Migration Process in minimal time and at minimal cost. We have connectors for most source repositories.

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Sensitive Information Types in Office 365 allow you identify sensitive content that is held in Exchange and SharePoint Online and restrict its use.

You can leverage existing rules (e.g. Credit card numbers) or define your own.

The rules are applied as part of the search crawl.  The content of a document or email is analysed and if, for example, a credit card number is found a property is set on the document.

Depending on the licence that you have for Office 365 you can then run searches to identify the offending content or apply policies that restrict its use.

Sensitive information types are not guaranteed to find every offending document but they are a great broad brush approach to information security and compliance.

If you are working with scanned images that have been OCR’d and converted to PDF+Text then there is a good chance that these will be identified.

Further reading;

https://blogs.office.com/en-us/2014/08/27/search-sensitive-content-sharepoint-onedrive-documents/

https://support.office.com/en-gb/article/Keyword-queries-and-search-conditions-for-Content-Search-c4639c2e-7223-4302-8e0d-b6e10f1c3be3

https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/Office-365/Announcing-support-for-custom-sensitive-information-types-in-the/td-p/62764

https://support.office.com/en-gb/article/Create-a-custom-sensitive-information-type-82c382a5-b6db-44fd-995d-b333b3c7fc30

https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dn781122(v=exchg.150).aspx

https://channel9.msdn.com/Events/Ignite/2016/BRK3021-TS

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Microsoft has added Communication sites to SharePoint Online.

These allow users to create aesthetically pleasing micro sites within a SharePoint Online tenancy.  See below;

Communication sites are a useful addition to the capabilities of SharePoint Online and make it easy for users to create a nice responsive site.

Customisation capabilities, however, are not as rich as you had with classic SharePoint publishing sites so we will be working with those for a few years yet.

The standard supplied modern web parts are ok and with effort you can write your own using the SharePoint framework.

Further reading;

https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/SharePoint-Blog/Reach-your-audience-via-SharePoint-communication-sites-in-Office/ba-p/70079

https://blogs.office.com/en-us/2017/06/27/sharepoint-communication-sites-begin-rollout-to-office-365-customers/

https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Create-a-communication-site-in-SharePoint-Online-7FB44B20-A72F-4D2C-9173-FC8F59BA50EB

https://dev.office.com/sharepoint/docs/spfx/sharepoint-framework-overview

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HP provide an export connector (release script) for Kofax Capture to enable you to export scanned documents into HPE Content Manager (formerly HP Records Manager / Trim Context).

This has been around for a while and is used in most HPE Implementations in it’s most basic form.

You can find the reference information here.

Sometimes it’s good to look a better ways of doing things.

This article assumes that you are comfortable with the basic operation of the export connector but are looking at ways to improve, basically getting a more joined up capture system.

We are going to look at;

  • The Basic Experience
  • A Better Experience (For a lookup scenario)
  • Implementing that experience
    • Configuring the Export Connector
    • Writing a Lookup Function
    • Calling the Lookup Function
    • Fine Tuning

Ok so here goes.

Basic Experience

A lot of times the export connector is used in manual mode.

Every time a document is indexed the user sees the export connector (The panel underneath Trim Control Panel), clicks “Create Record”.  They then get the Record Creation screen which they fill in using the mouse.  If the names of your Kofax field and Trim fields align then they are defaulted (See Trim_Title in this example).

Better Experience

So a better experience is not to see the Export Connector at all.  If the record can be created using just Kofax then manual indexing will be quicker and if you are using ICR / OCR / Recognition it can be potentially automated.

So we want something like below.  We don’t really want to see that ugly record creation screen.

User just keys in the unique reference and the rest of the data should be pulled in from Records Manager, they can eyeball the image to make sure it matches, then the record should be automatically created.

Implementing

Ok so we know what we want but how to do.

Configuring the Export Connector

So to ensure that the export connector is working but not visible we set it to automatically invoke.

 

Writing a Lookup Function

So when the user keys in a unique reference we want to lookup information from Records Manager.  So where is this going to come from?  Well normally each record you scan is going into a folder and that folder will often carry all the meta data we need to visually check an image.

So our lookup is going to be to Records Manager which means a lookup function using the SDK.

This we can do using the .NET scripting built into Kofax.

What the script does is;

  • Connects to Trim
  • Finds the folder that matches our unique reference
  • Copies the meta from Trim back to Kofax so that the indexing user can see it
  • Ensures that when release the scanned document will be put in the correct folder (by setting the special Kofax field TRIM_Container
  • Ensures that the title is correct on the scanned document by setting the special Kofax field TRIM_Title

Calling the Lookup Function

The lookup function can be called as the post processing event on your unique lookup field.

Fine Tuning

Ok so you get the gist of one way of getting a better, more joined up capture experience for Kofax to Records Manager.

To get this ready for production you will also have to consider;

  • Kofax users moving backwards and forwards through batches and potentially changing values.
  • Setting a default destination container (This stops the manual record creation screen from randomly appearing in older export connector versions).

In Summary

The out of the box Kofax to Records Manager integration provides a good starting point.

With judicious use of scripting and configuration, however, you can make the two products really tightly integrated.

This can really reduce the time taken to scan documents especially with higher volume capture scenarios.

 

 

 

 

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A Few Tips for Working with SPFX Web Parts

Ok so a quick re-cap.

Microsoft are have made to the page and web part model in SharePoint – the new SharePoint Framework.

If you create a modern team site in SharePoint you will be able to create a welcome page that uses this new framework.

Creating a modern page

createpage

Adding News

Add the new headlines web part to add a news rollup.  You can add news which will automatically rollup to the news tab on the SharePoint mobile app for following sites.

addnews

Adding a Useful Rollup

This can be done using the highlighted content web part.

To make this more intuitive in this example we have created a new content type.  Intranet Subject Page.  This inherits from site page and has been added to site pages library.

Now we can add our web part and configure it to only rollup up our “Subject” pages and ignore news and landing pages.

highlightedcontent

So this web page will now (ok, when matching content has been added and search crawl has run) show all pages from the entire site collection where the content type is Intranet Subject Site Page.

Making the Modern Page Your Home Page

setwelcomepage

In Summary

We’ve just scratched the surface of what you can do with modern team sites and SPFX web parts.  The take away from this is very much;

  • Try and get some experience with the new web part model, it will become more widely used as Microsoft release the accompanying publishing page model.
  • The new model works very well in tandem with the accompanying apps – such as the SharePoint App for Mobile.
  • Check out http://www.ensentia.co.uk/free-client-side-web-parts-sharepoint-spfx/
  • This information is correct as of Q1 2017 (i.e. Microsoft is going to be improving this part of SharePoint this year).

 

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Example Client Side Web Parts for SharePoint (SPFX)

Ok so a quick re-cap.

Microsoft are making changes to the page and web part model in SharePoint – the new SharePoint Framework.

To take advantage you are going to have to write or obtain web parts created in this way.  Luckily the great and the good of the SharePoint Community have been quick to rise to the challenge.

You’ll find some links below.  If you wish to build these projects you will need a development environment (See this article) and some background on working with SPFX web parts (See this article).

If you want us to build any project for you then you’ll need to drop an email with the url for your resources / CDN (maybe “https://company.sharepoint.com/sites/intranet/SiteAssets/spfx40/” for a test).

SPFX 40 Fantastic Web Parts

spfx

Available from here.

https://github.com/OlivierCC/spfx-40-fantastics

 

 

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A taster of what is coming in 2017 for SharePoint

The short version?  More things, prettier things, better things and a growing trend for Microsoft providing apps to solve the business problems people used to develop in SharePoint (StaffHub, Teams et al)

The longer version?  Now what gets you excited might depend on what you are interested in or using SharePoint for, hopefully our heading below will draw you to the most relevant area.

Enjoy!

Pretty Things

Publishing Pages

So 2016 gave us the modern team site (O365).  In 2017 the same is coming for publishing.  You will be able to easily created beautiful responsive publishing sites.

These pages will use out of the box and custom web parts developed using the new SharePoint Framework.

Custom Themes

Office 365 custom themes will be updated to include more themes overall, the ability for a user to upload their own theme and an option to use Bing images as your theme.

Document Management & Compliance

Copy and move to SharePoint

Copy and move files between OneDrive and SharePoint in web experiences. In CY17, Microsoft add the ability to move an copy files between a greater range of locations.

Mobile Scanning for OneDrive for Business

Using the OneDrive mobile app seamlessly take a photo, convert it to a PDF, and store it in OneDrive for Business. This will come first to Android followed by iOS and Windows Phone.

Office 365 Groups preservation and deletion policy

Create and manage preservation and deletion policies that affect Office 365 Group mail and files in one step using the Security and Compliance Center

Scanning – Office Lens iOS feature updates

New capabilities with Office Lens for iOS.  Multi scanning; scan multiple images in a row and save/send as a series.  Rotate scanned images3D touch feature to change modes.

OneDrive for Business SharePoint Online Document Library Sync

The ability to sync SharePoint document libraries, including Office 365 groups, added to the Next Generation Sync Client (NGSC). NGSC will also sync OneDrive for Business Shared Folders.

Apps

 

Microsoft StaffHub

Ok so not strickly speaking SharePoint but interesting because it provides the sort of solution that many people have tried to create before in SharePoint.

Microsoft StaffHub is a new app coming to Office 365 that connects Deskless Workers to the information they need to do their job for the day. StaffHub is currently in preview – find more information at http://staffhub.ms.

Migration

FastTrack | Dropbox to OneDrive for Business Migration

FastTrack Center will offer file migration services from Dropbox to OneDrive for Business as a new benefit provided by the FastTrack Center. This migration service will be available to customers with 150+ seats of eligible Office 365 plans.

Propeller Heads

 

SharePoint Online – Webhooks on SharePoint Document Libraries

Unlock the Webhooks development scenario through the Microsoft Graph. These WebHooks set of APIs allow developers to get notified with changes from SharePoint lists and document libraries in a performant and reliable way.

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