Developing a BYOD Policy? Consult Your MSP

pexels-photo-271560.jpegThough it may sound simple, the mechanics of a BYOD policy are actually very complex. Many employees today don't just bring their own devices to work -- they also use their devices for work while on-the-go. This can expose a company to a lot of risk if their BYOD policy isn't well-developed. MSPs are well-versed in developing, managing, and enforcing BYOD policies. Here are just a few areas in which you may want to consult your MSP.

Consider your regulations. Different industries have different regulations related to security and compliance. If you're in an industry that involves HIPAA, for instance, you may have special rules regarding what can and can't be stored on personal devices. This is also true throughout legal industries and other professional organizations. An MSP will be able to direct you to these regulatory standards so that you can avoid a costly audit or risk assessment.

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Define ownership. When your employees download information and use apps, does your company control it or do they? An MSP will be able to help you establish ownership of this information, so that your company has the control that it needs to protect itself. Otherwise what do you do when an employee leaves and walks out the door with company information?

Create an acceptable use policy. Your employees need to know what they can and can't do at work and even with their devices. When they choose to use their devices for work, they make their devices a part of the company's infrastructure. Your MSP can help you craft an acceptable use policy that is not overly restrictive but still protects your business.

Protect your endpoints. A BYOD policy alone can only do so much. Once you've developed your BYOD policy, you also need to invest in endpoint protection. Endpoint protection is important because users can make mistakes -- and, sometimes, a user may not even be at fault. Your MSP can set up protections so that even if a device is lost or stolen, the information on it won't be compromised.

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A BYOD policy is going to inform your employee's interactions with their end point devices for a long time to come. With as many BYOD-related risks as there are, it only makes sense to involve the professionals. An MSP will be able to help you at all levels of your BYOD strategy so that you and your employees can take advantage of the benefits of personal devices without having to expose yourselves to the risks.

Guide to Keeping company's data safe

The Top 3 BYOD Risks You Need to Know About

Mobile_Device_Management.jpgMobile devices are still one of the leading threats that organizations worldwide are being forced to counter. Mobile device management presents a serious challenge to an organization: employees today may bring in and use a multitude of devices, operating on numerous different networks, and potentially compromising a wide selection of data. As cyber attackers are increasingly targeting mobile devices for information and access, BYOD policies and mobile device management have become even more essential.

Here are three of the top BYOD risks facing organizations today.

1. Lost and Physically Stolen Devices

When most individuals think of IT security, they think of software -- not hardware. But the physical theft of devices can be a substantial risk. Reports have shown that many individuals -- if not most -- do not properly secure their smartphones with passwords or pass codes. All it takes is the theft of a single device and an individual could gain access to personal and confidential emails, servers, and other protected information.

2. Mobile Device Malware

Malware is increasingly becoming a risk for mobile devices. There have been many high-profile Android viruses and other malicious programs in just the last two years. Malware can come in the form of viruses that can infect a network or keyloggers that could collect privileged information from an employee and send it back to an unknown third-party. Either way, it becomes very difficult to protect against malicious programs introduced through mobile devices because IT personnel may not have control over the device. If a personal device is infected, it can be a substantial risk: it can interact with the employee's activities without being discovered by the network's security system.

3. Disgruntled Employees

Malicious insiders are a serious risk to a business, and with a mobile device in hand, a disgruntled employee often has all they need to create issues for an organization. Comprehensive authentication protocols are necessary to combat this threat. From mobile phones to laptops, many employees are able to leave an organization with confidential information on their devices. Data-in-motion services can be used to control the information that employees can see and restrict access from employees who have severed their relationship with the organization.

Smartphones, tablets, and other mobile devices are going to continue to proliferate across the IT canvas. It's up to IT professionals to find ways to manage these devices through a controlled and consolidated network infrastructure. Organizations today ignore issues related to BYOD at their own peril.

Guide to Keeping company's data safe

Image source: Luke Wroblewski

IT Teams Scrambling to Support 'Bring Your Own Device' to the Workplace

Organizations that allow employees to use their personal devices at work are reaping the benefits of a more engaged workforce, particularly among their younger workers. BYOD makes companies a more attractive place to work and saves them the huge up-front cost of buying the devices.

But IT support for personal devices may create additional back-end costs. IT departments now have to manage several different platforms that can support iPads and iPhones, Microsoft and Android-based devices, or any variety of smart phones and tablets.

According to Forrester, 84% of “Generation Y” employees say they chose their work devices without considering corporate policy. They simply assume their organizations will support whatever device they want to use.

More BYOD = A Greater Need for Mobile Device Management

This situation is not likely to change. Companies that want to compete for market share will need to compete for talent, which means they'll need to accommodate devices of all kinds. This, in turn, means that businesses will need to invest more into mobile device management in order to accomodate BYOD policies while still keeping their data safe.

Talk to the experts at CWPS about solutions that can support your end-users' expectations and your need to support people on the move. Contact us today at: (877) 297-7472 or connect@cwps.com.

Guide to Keeping company's data safe