According to global research firm Forrester, 350 million employees will use smartphones by 2016, with 200 million choosing to bring their own device to work. That’s a lot of points of pressure when it comes to mobile security in the realm of corporate data.
Professional users are demanding the same kind of end-user experiences in business as they enjoy in their personal lives. To respond to these requests, many businesses have adopted bring-your-own-device policies. For chief information officers, the imperative is to isolate simple, safe and secure multipurpose mobile solutions. How to keep all this information flowing, but protected from being hacked?
Let’s turn to to some of the experts in making BYOD work, security-wise, and to one company that’s deploying mobile with a mind to make it free of compromises.
Logging: The Employee/Employer Equation
According to a report recently published by CIO, while a whopping 88 percent of employees believe their device is very or somewhat secure, 77 percent of IT managers see the risk of malware spreading to the corporate network from mobile devices. Level of risk: moderate to very high.
One responses is what’s come to be known as logging. Companies simply record what employees are doing on the internal network. But there’s a potential complication for staff members: they may not realize that they’re being watched.
Study-conductor Blue Coat found that even though only 19% of corporate employees would knowingly allow their company to monitor their personal devices as they interact with the in-house network, some 41% of the corporations examined were already doing so.
“And the regulations have come down pretty clear on this,” Timothy Chiu, Blue Coat’s director of product marketing, told the publication. “The corporate network is a corporate-owned resource and companies are allowed to log what they want.”
The Third Party App: Minimizing Risks with Employee Buy-In
Another idea in the arena of locking down personal mobile security on the corporate network is to implement third-party data sharing apps.
Eric Hart is the network/infrastructure manager at PING, the golf equipment brand.
“Mobile devices are important for how we share information,” Hart said. PING uses a third-party data-sharing company to manage their employees BYOD on the IT side.
“Teams at PING use . . . smartphones, tablets and traditional computers to collaborate with our partners, clients and vendors for a more consistent and secure experience,” Hart said.
The bottom line in Hart’s environment is that the company wants to open up the employee-end options by having the whole team get onboard with a common-thread application. The goal is to reduce the obstacles and effort it takes to share information, but to also keep the walls from crumbling when it comes to protecting what’s proprietary at PING.
And so, the BYOD moment is upon us. Making companies productive without compromise: the realities are still coming into focus for both workers and their employers, but the tools and strategies are emerging that may afford collaboration and security a better future fit.