Data security is more relevant now than ever. With the implementation of laws to tackle data breaches, which add a risk of liability and diminish status, businesses are compelled to adopt security solutions.
Businesses are investing in data storage and data gathering more than ever before. And consumers have become aware of their rights when dealing with data; it has made them more cautious and willing. The most common types of customer data collected by businesses online are email address (89%), name (84%), telephone number (75%), and physical address (68%).
For businesses, the challenge is protecting the data undergoing several stages of processing and third-party access to consumer data. Facebook can be one prominent example of data security. It has a pool of consumer data used by third-party application developers for providing personalized marketing campaigns and product development. But many of the third-party application developers can exploit the data source, gaining access to personal information in the process.
Consumers are not the only affected; businesses around the world climbing the ladder of digital transformation are facing the security challenge. Data is networked through several stages of the business operation, and to secure each step means building on the organization’s security strategy.
Mobility is one part of business operation, wherein the employees use several of their devices to access business data (applications) and networks. Most businesses implement mobility solutions by providing employees with devices such as company laptops and/or mobiles that only work in the business network. The challenge for businesses, however, with this activity was that most employees avoided carrying the device around, defeating the purpose of mobility, which was work from anywhere.
With the lack of personalization in business provided devices, we saw the emergence of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD). BYOD was where companies provided the platform to employees for mobility interaction. Familiarity with the device and better user-control brought more employees to the usability of the BYOD platform.
The BYOD mobility solution comes with a broader set of security challenges—the number of devices differ, and each device has a different OS. About 37% of the employees that access business-related material on their mobile devices haven’t activated their security lock feature. And 35% of them store their official email passwords on their mobile devices. BYOD potentially is the biggest risk that every business needs to address, with over 80% of the BYOD devices going uncontrolled currently.
Here is why businesses need to have a BYOD policy in place to tackle the rising usage:
Increases productivity– The more a device is used, the more it gets relevant. Employees can easily organize reports and answer business emails, whichever or whenever that is required, and even stay connected to their personal lives without changing the device. Familiarity, flexibility, and advancement are more of the overall solutions every employee wants from the device.
Cost-saving– If BYOD is implemented, it can reduce the business’ investment on the devices. If the employees are using their own devices, it will significantly reduce the cost invested in the maintenance, device, and hardware.
Improving employee loyalty– BYOD strategy is one of the selling points that has found inclusion in the job description. The gig economy is on the rise, and the BYOD policy offers one of the biggest selling points for the users. Remote location access for all the data will increase employee satisfaction and improve loyalty toward the business.
Security challenges– As most employees’ devices offer endless opportunities, wherein they download videos, applications, and visit many malicious websites, IT security teams face tough security challenges. Businesses need to implement access management to control data, not the device. Each business application should have policies toward data usage based on users and must implement a complete VPN solution when the devices use the private or unprotected network to access data.
Employee privacy– Some of the mobility management solutions provide businesses with the device live location feature for security purposes. Employees sharing their live location with employers just for security purposes can be imperious. Data, both personal and business, is critical, and employees should have sovereignty authority over their data.
What should the BYOD policy have?
Many organizations rely on the usage of old PC tactics such as passwords to protect the business data and network.
Maintenance of passwords is a security challenge, lacking security agility based on data and the environment. The password is just the tip of the iceberg relating to the requirements in the BYOD policy.So what are the solutions businesses should have:
Identity and access management
BYOD policy should outline identity and access management to ensure that only authorized users are allowed to access the network and data in the device.
Passwords are a liability for businesses because they can be cracked, and employees usually forget about them. Companies can eliminate the passwords by bringing zero-sign on, software and hardware tokens, behavior analysis, and even adding biometrics to the solution. Password-less authentication can become a security portfolio of sorts for businesses to showcase their expertise in the safety domain.
- Zero-trust security approach
Everything is under a constant security threat. Even the safest system today has to be agile and depend on AI learning and constant enhancement every day to deal with thousands of security threats lurking on the internet. Sophisticated phishing scams, malware, or malicious links can eliminate the complete data, or even encrypt your data and call for ransom. Mobile devices can act as one of the easiest pathways for compromising the entire business infrastructure.
In a zero-trust approach, security professionals must be able to equip employees with appropriate applications, profiles, and policies on the devices of their choice. Monitoring every user and their policies, and access control for each type of data should be implemented.
- Remote device wiping
Many EMM solutions offer encryption of business data even when it is on mobile devices. But if the data is left unprotected, then wiping is the only option in case the device is misplaced. Many mobility management solutions allow businesses to remove corporate data from mobile devices using a single pane solution. Therefore, to bring about a complete uninstallation of business data, what kind of connectivity would be required for the remote wiping is the question that needs to be answered.
- Privacy priority
A lot of employees are concerned about the snooping of IT departments or admins on their personal devices. The concerns get bigger every time there is a new update on mobility solutions because it increases their chances of sneaking.
A separate configuration should be implemented wherein the complete business data and apps are barricaded from the personal data; a firewall can be a choice. The IT teams need to communicate with the employees about the kind of data that can be accessed by them.
- Disconnecting devices
BYOD policies should have all the required stipulations that need to be followed when employees leave the office. Most of the mobility solutions offer an exit strategy, wherein they eliminate the user completely. In fact, many EMM solutions offer restrictions on data access and sometimes even complete deletion of data.
BYOD and security are 2 endpoints of businesses, and IT teams and employees have to work together to build a privacy-driven and secured environment. The businesses’ decision to opt for MAM, MDM, EMM, or UEM will depend on the type of data and access given to the user.
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