Here are the top 50 cloud services your employees are using every day

Credit: ThemaTisch via Flickr

Skyhigh Networks, a company that helps businesses discover what cloud services employees are using, compiled a list of the top 50 services that its customers' employees use. The biggest surprise is that employees are using tons of different services to store and share files online, showing that there's huge demand for these services -- and no single dominant player yet.

Skyhigh, which became broadly available in late February, has only 15 pilot customers at the moment but some of them, like Cisco, are big. It estimates that it monitors around 500,000 end users.

Here are the top ten services these folks are accessing:

1. Facebook (social network)The rest of the list is at the end of this post, after the break.]

2. Dropbox (file-sharing)

3. Google mail (email)

4. Apple iCloud (file-sharing)

5. LinkedIn (social network, recruiting)

6. Disqus (comments)

7. Salesforce (CRM)

8. Amazon Web Services (hosted computing platform for web apps)

9. Hotmail (email)

10. Box.net (file-sharing)

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Three of the top 10 (and 10 of the top 50) services enable online storage and file-sharing. This is by far the most of any category, making it clear that workers are very interested in sharing documents, either with other people or devices.

A couple of those cloud storage companies were names I didn’t recognize, like 4shared (which came in at number 17, just behind Office 365), Rackspace Cloudfiles (number 39), and Screencast (number 50), showing that there are many new entrants in this popular market segment.

Other popular services that surprised me included Disqus, the service that lets people comment online (including on CITEworld), Hotmail (which made the top ten -- ahead of Twitter, which ranked 14) and AOL at number 20.

Skyhigh also advises customers about why they should be worried about certain apps. For instance, it says that the auto-sync and lack of enterprise control in iCloud makes inadvertent leakage of company data “very real” for users of that service.

Skyhigh insists its goal isn’t to limit employee usage of online services that make them more productive. The company wants to “allow employees to have information so they can avoid using services that are high risk,” Rajiv Gupta, Skyhigh’s CEO, says in a video about the company. “We want to enable IT to say yes to become enablers rather than the people who say no.”

He said that most customers he talks to think that employees are using around 40 apps when in fact they are typically accessing closer to 200.

In addition to monitoring services and telling customers what the security risks are to services, Skyhigh also lets IT administrators enforce policies that limit end users from accessing services.

Skyhigh joins a number of companies trying to tackle app management. Employees are gravitating to the easy-to-use online services that help them be more productive but some IT departments want to ensure that workers aren’t leaking sensitive data when they use such tools.

Traditional mobile device management providers, like Zenprise, which was acquired by Citrix, and Airwatch, are adding app management tools to their services to meet this need.

Here are the next 40, rounding out the top 50.

11. Amazon S3 (hosted data storage for web apps)

12. Google Apps (productivity and file-sharing)

13. Evernote (note-taking)

14. Twitter (social network)

15. Microsoft Office365 (productivity and file-sharing)

16. 4shared (file-sharing)

17. Oracle RightNow (customer service)

18. EMC Mozy (backup)

19. AOL (content, communications)

20. Sourceforge (code management)

21. Netsuite (financials)

22. Marketo (marketing automation)

23. Flickr (photo-sharing)

24. Verisign Geotrust (SSL certificates)

25. Google Analytics (web analytics)

26. Yousendit (file-sharing)

27. New Relic (web application performance management)

28. Oracle Taleo (talent management)

29. Slideshare (presentations)

30. Workday (HR and financials)

31. Carbonite (backup)

32. Docusign (document signing)

33. Prezi (presentations)

34. Typekit (font embedding)

35. Skype (videoconferencing)

36. Sliderocket (presentations)

37. Github (code management)

38. Rackspace Cloudfiles (online storage and file sharing)

39. Sugarsync (file sharing)

40. Pagerduty (online IT dispatching)

41. Bitbucket (code management)

42. Intuit Quickbase (financials)

43. Constant Contact (email list management)

44. Xobni (email management)

45. Snapfish (digital photo printing)

46. Spiceworks (IT discussion and answers group)

47. Olark (live chat with customers)

48. Symantec Brightmail (email filtering)

49. Addthis (social bookmarking)

50. Screencast (file sharing)

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