BYOD or Bring Your Own Device is a modern practice where employees use their personally owned gadgets – smartphones, laptops, tablets, or whatnot – for work. This is opposed to the traditional method of using company-issued equipment exclusively for work stuff which can have mobile security threats.
The BYOD policy has several perks, such as more flexibility in remote work, a healthier balance between work and personal life, and reduced equipment expenses. However, some challenges arise from this practice, particularly in terms of business mobile security threats.
When employees use the same device for all their dealings, this could create several mobile security threats that the company must address in the BYOD policy. Here are seven of the top threats and our recommended solutions.
Mobile Security Threats – Device Theft
In the event of stolen or lost devices, unknown entities could have unauthorized access to sensitive information stored on the device. To guard against these mobile security threats, there must be a way to delete data from the device remotely.
Malware can quickly lead to a data breach and security problems. Your company can avoid this if all personally owned devices have reliable, updated antivirus software to guard against malware infection.
Encryption is necessary for maintaining the confidentiality and security of data, so most work and home networks have this. However, public hotspots are common for mobile security threats. If you need to connect to an uncertain network, use a VPN to guarantee data security.
Mobile Security Threats – Phishing
People are more relaxed when using their mobile phones than when they use a company computer. Because of this, many are prone to becoming victims of phishing attacks. Constant reminders would help instill a natural sense of caution in employees.
Not all employees are gadget fanatics who would immediately fall in line when the newest iPhone is released. Many would stick to their old gadgets until they fell apart. While we might applaud their frugality, outdated devices can put corporate and personal data at high risk with mobile security threats. You can state in your BYOD policy that there must be a mandatory regular upgrade of all devices employees wish to use for work.
Personal phones and laptops often contain games or other apps that might not be completely secure. These apps sometimes request permissions that could put your device’s contents at risk. To avoid these risks, the BYOD policy must prohibit the installation and use of these unverified apps.
When sending digital correspondence from a work computer, all data is automatically encrypted to keep it confidential. Public hotspots and some home networks might not have sufficiently secure levels of encryption, which will compromise your data. Mandatory use of proper encryption before sending out any business data will help prevent such compromises.
Creating Your BYOD Policy to Prevent Mobile Security Threats
If it is your first time drafting a BYOD policy for your company, it can get intimidating, considering all the issues that need to be addressed. For instance, the mobile threats we have listed above are just some of the potential problems you would have to deal with, and we are sure you would think of more as you go along.
To ensure you do not forget any crucial aspect, we strongly recommend you use the BYOD policy template we have created specifically for this purpose. It is a comprehensive but concise document, including everything from permitted devices and security specifications to restrictions and sanctions. Of course, you can customize it as you see fit by adding or removing items to make it appropriate for your organization’s security goals. Call us now if you need additional help!