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5 Most Secure Document Collaboration Tools for Business

Posted on Monday July 10, 2023

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Files and documents are the primary tools for chronicling and sharing information. While helpful, collaborating like this can raise privacy concerns for businesses because documents may contain business secrets, proprietary information, and personally identifiable information (PII). 

The most secure document collaboration tools for businesses prevent data loss, theft, and misuse while preserving their organization’s competitive advantage. 

What Is Secure Document Collaboration?

Secure document collaboration enables individuals, typically workers, to share files, information, and sensitive data in a simple, safe, and protected manner. They foster collaboration by allowing several users to simultaneously work on a single document while maintaining its privacy restrictions. 

The Features & Capabilities You Should Look for In Secure Document Collaboration Tools

Generally, any secure document collaboration tool should have a couple, if not most, of these features:

  • Robust security features: The best document collaboration software incorporates security features like encryption and authentication processes to protect the integrity of its content. 
  • Tracking workflow changes: This allows team members to monitor progress, especially by seeing who has made what changes and holding people accountable. 
  • Document management: This includes the ability to draft, create, edit, save, and publish documents to a specified audience. 
  • Comments and feedback: This allows members to provide feedback that facilitates asynchronous collaboration and messaging.
  • Consolidated data and communications: This centralization fosters quick task completion and eliminates the need to switch back and forth between multiple apps.

Top 5 Document Collaboration Software

1. Digital Guardian Secure Collaboration

As a secure collaboration tool, Digital Guardian Secure Collaboration incorporates the notion of perimeter-less, zero-trust security. 

Most secure document tools are adept at protecting sensitive information within the confines of the platform. However, unlike the product, they cannot offer protection once the data leaves the network or application platform. The product is different because it can track data once it leaves the confines of your network or endpoint. Users can also dynamically revoke access to leaked information or information mistakenly sent to the wrong user.

Common Features and Use Cases

  • The product can protect data when it leaves managed system environments.
  • Facilitates zero-trust file sharing with portable, persistent data security and encryption.
  • Documents are inspected for malware, cyber threats, and sensitive information before transfer is permitted.
  • Allows granular security implementations that can be based on policy and classification.


  • Provides total control over documents wherever they travel.
  • The product's Always-on File Security bundles encryption, data protection, and digital rights management into a secure document collaboration tool.
  • Ensures your valuable data is safe throughout the document’s collaborative orbit.


  • The lack of a tiered pricing model disfavors small business enterprises.

2. Google Docs

Google Docs is a free, cloud-based solution. It is also one of the most widely used document collaboration software. Its autosave capability is one of its most defining features, saving countless users from hair-pulling meltdowns due to the loss of critical information from unsaved work. 

Common Features and Use Cases

  • Every change is automatically saved.
  • Allows seamless online collaboration in real time. 
  • Provides ready-made yet customizable templates for various writing tasks.
  • Facilitates the use of different permissions on the same document.
  • Only browser, no special software required.


  • Allows users to sync changes from anywhere.
  • Simple, intuitive interface with easy-to-use tools for editing and formatting content.
  • Integrates seamlessly with other Google apps.
  • Although web-based, it allows you to unlock offline editing on the Chrome browser.


  • While it’s good for commonplace editing tasks, it lacks advanced collaboration options.
  • It doesn’t contain top-notch security features.

3. Microsoft Word

Microsoft Word is a powerful word-processing software and part of Microsoft’s productivity suite. It is ideal for creating documents of the highest professional standards with visually appealing elements. Microsoft Word also comes with an extensive range of features.

Common Features and Use Cases

  • The ability to secure documents through passwords.
  • Numerous templates and ready-made designs to choose from.
  • The ability to incorporate graphic elements like 3D models directly into your document.
  • Built-in language translator.
  • Checking document readability scores.


  • A very user-friendly interface.
  • Though there are alternatives in the marketplace, Microsoft Word still remains a top-notch product.
  • Sophistication word processing features, including editing tools and a wide range of add-ons.
  • Easy to create professional-looking documents.


  • Unlike Google Docs, which comes free with a Gmail account, you’ll need to purchase a Microsoft Office package.
  • It lacks strong collaborative features.
  • Comparatively exorbitant cost. Unlike most productivity applications, it requires a costly subscription. 

4. Zoho WorkDrive

Not to be confused with Zoho Docs, Zoho WorkDrive is a cloud-based, real-time collaboration tool. It provides teams a secure workspace to draft, publish, and share documents with configurable access controls. 

Common Features and Use Cases

  • Real-time notifications along with team folders.
  • Provides audit logs with change tracking.
  • Team folders for different projects that allow sharing and syncing on individual desktops.
  • GDPR and HIPAA compliance.
  • End-to-end encryption plus two-factor authentication.


  • Affordable with advanced features like admin controls.
  • It enables you to view up to 220+ file formats.
  • Highly scalable.
  • Granular permission level control.


  • Lacks instant chat or conferencing features.
  • Small single file upload file sizes. 

5. Atlassian Confluence

Atlassian Confluence bills itself as the prime, remote-friendly team workspace. It provides a company-wide knowledge hub for teams to create, organize, collaborate, and publish information. 

Confluence is the ideal document platform for teams collaborating on mission-critical projects. It provides an easy way to track other team members' feedback, comments, and edits throughout the project’s lifecycle. 

Common Features and Use Cases

  • The Page Tree hierarchical structure allows you to organize and discover content easily. 
  • Page versioning allows team members to keep track of document versions and revisions, with the ability to revert changes.
  • Whiteboards for ideation and creative visualization of projects.
  • Atlassian Marketplace provides a vast ecosystem of apps for integration with Confluence.


  • Coordinate plans and connect work across teams.
  • Notifications inform collaborators whenever changes are made.
  • Templates and macros to automate tasks.


  • Instead of built-in features, Confluence depends largely on plug-ins.
  • A single standard view for all projects. 

Why Might Traditional Document Collaboration Software Not Be Enough to Protect Things Like Critical Intellectual Property?

  • The risk of data leakage is much higher: While traditional document collaboration software may have in-built security features, they lack the robust, hardened perimeter security of its secure document counterparts. The latter typically incorporates assurances like ISO/IEC 27001 certification.
  • Regulatory deficiencies: They are insufficient to maintain the growing regulatory state of government policies designed to protect data privacy. 
  • Less emphasis on security: Traditional documentation tools often lack rudimentary security features like multiple levels of access control and the inability to back up files. 

Why Fortra’s Secure Collaboration Functionality Is a Better Option

While collaboration is important in today’s work environment, you still need an appropriate level of security to ensure the data your team is working on is kept secure. Since the product is platform agnostic, it can secure any type of file format, as well, something that can alleviate configuration headaches.

Watch this short video to learn how the product can track, protect, and secure your information.

Keep your most sensitive data in the right hands​


Tags:  Compliance Secure Collaboration

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