Effectively managing BYOD policies and their security risks

managing BYOD policies

Just a few years back, enterprises wondered whether they should allow their employees to use personal devices at work. Today, the question is less about whether or not this is a good idea, and more about how to cope with a wide array of mobile computing devices and the security concerns that come with them.  

Trend Micro indicated that 82% of companies allow personal devices for work. And if you plan to join them, you need to exercise care, especially about information security. Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policies boost flexibility and productivity, but also subject organizations to new vulnerabilities, increasing the difficulty of securing corporate data.

Trend Micro’s report also pointed out that 50% of companies with BYOD policies were breached via employee-owned devices. Fortunately, there is hope. Here are some data management solutions and mobile strategies to keep your organization safe from a breach.

#1 Mobile device management

Mobile device management (MDM) solutions offer a balance between data control for employers and employee privacy, making it easy for small and medium-sized-business owners to deploy, secure, and connect devices to organizational documents and then manage those devices from a single dashboard.  

Inventory management features alone make MDM software worthwhile.  You'll have up-to-the-minute information on what devices employees currently use and how their security, which eliminates the problems of poorly updated spreadsheets.

In addition to detailed device information, MDM allows you to implement strict PIN requirements, always-on data encryption, and remote wiping capabilities. These are all required by compliance frameworks like HIPAA and Sarbanes Oxley.

#2 Securing apps and data

Many organizations think MDM is a set-it-and-forget-it solution for BYOD policies. Turn it on and let it work, right? Absolutely not. Someone needs to actively monitor company apps and data to ensure they’re secure; only then can you stop worrying about mobile-related breaches.

You need to be sure that your employees’ off-hours mobile habits don't put business data at risk. For example, you may need to set up your MDM solution to prohibit users from downloading unverified apps or email attachments that put the entire device at risk.

You can manage your company's BYOD more effectively with Microsoft's Enterprise Mobility + Security, an all-in-one identity, mobile management, and security solution from SimplyClouds.

#3 Conduct regular audits and employee training

You must make it a habit to track and review a record of devices your employees use. A smartphone may have been considered safe when an employee first bought it but totally vulnerable a year later. Update your employees on BYOD policies as often as possible to avoid unsafe and out-of-date practices.

Employees rarely make risky decisions deliberately. They just don't understand what's really at stake, which could be their job or even the livelihood of the company.

#4 Other security measures

Like any IT solution, BYOD security needs to fit neatly into your existing solutions. Here are some ways you can integrate mobile device security into other IT solutions to boost efficiency:

  • Consider choosing company-wide anti-malware software that includes a mobile version
  • Combine mobile device monitoring with your 24/7 network monitoring solution
  • Make sure your data backup solution works well with mobile devices so everything is protected on a single, easy-to-manage platform
  • Configure your intrusion detection system to notify administrators anytime an unrecognized mobile device tries to connect to your network

If you have any queries on a complete enterprise mobility solution, allow us to give you peace of mind knowing that your business information is always protected. Contact us now for insights from our experts at SimplyClouds.

Categories: Cloud security, Enterprise cloud

Tags: MDM, BYOD, enterprise mobility, device security