There are many benefits to embracing BYOD in the enterprise. One of the driving forces behind its widespread acceptance is the significant cost reduction that it brings. But just as BYOD has its upsides, it also has its downsides, the biggest of which are the security risks business-critical information is exposed to.
Unlike company-issued devices, personally-owned devices are not inherently secure. Not only can they come bereft of device and data management features, but also have other risk factors that can put companies on the losing end of a costly data breach. For example, employee-owned gadgets may have unpatched vulnerabilities—either on the device or OS level—that can be exploited. Employees may also practice bad mobile habits, like carelessly using their devices to connect to unsecure networks or downloading malicious apps. These devices can also be lost or stolen, leaving corporate data at risk of falling into the wrong hands.
There are ways to mitigate these threats, however. The traditional way is to use mobile security solutions. Those that use reputation technology can help enterprises and their employees defend themselves against threats in the mobile space, including malicious and high-risk apps, links, and mobile sites.
Another option enterprises can look into is mobile device management (MDM), which allows enterprise IT teams to set policies governing mobile device use. There is also virtual mobile infrastructure (VMI) that ensures corporate data never resides on employee devices. Employees will have to access their company files and accounts through a client app, which then connects to a secure enterprise corporate server hosting that information. This eliminates the risk of data getting stolen or compromised, as the data stays on the server and not on employee devices.
In a day and age where data breaches are rife and could spell bankruptcy for any company, security is more important than ever. And with the dawn of personal devices entering the workforce and network, the possibility of losing data to either malicious apps or device loss looms larger. It’s time to change that. Learn more through our guide, “Embracing BYOD: Are You Exposing Critical Data?”
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