With smartphones becoming the got to gadget, and tablets and laptops rounding out the mobile device trio, it’s becoming ever less likely that your employees will arrive at work without at least one internet-enabled device. So how can businesses both protect themselves and make the most of bring your own device (BYOD) ?
On the plus side, the BYOD trend can improve employee productivity and accountability, whether or not it’s company issued or a personal device approved to be used for work. But there are both practical issues and the potential for security problems as employees may be taking sensitive data with them wherever they go – home, out socially or in other non secure settings.
For a start, who covers the service plan and other charges for things such as security software, cloud storage, data downloads and apps? If an employee is expected to use their personal device for work, who is responsible for things such as repairs or upgrades? What if the individual is traveling abroad for work and using a business-issued device to make calls home to their loved ones? What if their device is lost, stolen or otherwise compromised?
Another practical consideration is the pressure put on company WiFi or networks when many personal devices can access them, even just to update mobile software or apps.
Do your employees understand basic safety procedures for mobile devices, such as using security software, password protection, encrypting sensitive data, only allowing legitimate downloads, taking care on unsecured websites and when using public WiFi networks and disabling Bluetooth when not needed?