BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) is a practice being readily adopted by businesses and companies alike. Allowing BYOD can make good business sense, including reducing IT maintenance costs and increasing staff productivity, who are more familiar on their own devices and with it can also have their work at hand whenever they are away from the office.
However, if adopting a BYOD methodology, there are certain risks, and steps you should take to ensure your BYOD security solutions are in place to prevent data breaches and other information loss. Here are some tips to make sure your information is protected.
Password protected access
Set up a password protected access controls, ensuring password or PIN access is required. Each device should have its own unique account and password, and shouldn’t be generic across your staff or easy to guess. A common mistake many businesses make is substituting letters for similar-looking numbers, thinking it’s a clever way to remember a password, but it is also an easy code to break.
Ensure devices’ OS and security measures are up to date
Stress the importance of device maintenance to your staff. If they are bringing their own devices, they should ensure automatic updates of the device’s OS, software and firmware are on, so that security patches are made in real time. Security threats sweep fast in the digital world, and hackers are prolific, so it’s easy to fall victim to vulnerabilities.
Make measures to control networks
Ensure your employees only connect to trusted networks. Device settings should prompt
users when they are about to connect to unsecured connections
Automatic backup measures and activate “find my device” services
In the case of a lost device, having these two measures in place can make all the difference. The information your staff has on their phone is likely valuable and losing it can set work back, at the very least. The ability to track an employee’s phone can lead to its recovery, but in the very worst case scenario, it is also possible to wipe the device so that confidential information isn’t leaked.
Be wary of downloading free apps
Many free apps have been found to share the information stored on a device with third parties. This includes tracking users and accessing the contact details on the device. Ensure your IT department provides a list of apps that are safe to download, and at the very least limits the access and permissions these apps are granted.
Install antivirus tools
There are both free and commercial antivirus and malware softwares available for mobile devices, and all BYODs should have these installed to increase security and limit breaches. Your IT and security team will have a list of the most reputable, and will be able to assist in keeping devices secure.
Implement Mobile Device Management (MDM) software
MDM software can further ensure the security of your business’s devices by allowing IT teams to configure device security settings and configurations and preventing breaches and loss of information.
If you’re thinking of implementing a BYOD strategy within your business or company, speak to your IT department about the security solutions needed to ensure the safety of your important confidential data. If you don’t have an internal IT department, speak with a local IT specialist to help put the right strategies in place.