Mobile devices have earned their place in business operations as a necessary tool for productivity and employee satisfaction. In fact, IDC predicted that there will be 105.4 million mobile workers by 2020, two-thirds of whom are expected to be remote staff members. Many organizations have adopted bring-your-own-device policies as a result of these estimations, but these plans don't always follow best practices. There are three main strategies you can use to bolster your BYOD policy:
1. Create a detailed plan
A BYOD policy must be very specific and detailed, with rules regarding what devices are allowed, how they can be used and security best practices. Forbes contributor Larry Alton suggested collaborating with the IT team to establish necessary rules while still leaving room for flexibility. Managers must be consistent in the implementation of new standards and BYOD enforcement to ensure that staff are following the guidelines. Post hard copies of the formalized BYOD plan and make it easily accessible. This way, users will better understand expectations concerning data and device usage and how the policy will be managed.
2. Educate employees on best practices
People use mobile devices for a variety of purposes, and each application has rights to access certain information on the device. Organizations must ensure that personal applications don't have the authorization to gather sensitive business data and that workers understand the implications of these situations. It will be important to educate employees on best practices to stay secure and mitigate shadow IT cases.
More phishing attacks are emerging geared toward targeting mobile devices and unsuspecting users. Malicious applications are also becoming more of a prevalent problem, leading to compromised information, data loss and other significant consequences. BetaNews noted that teaching employees how to identify a phishing message and being hyper aware of email abnormalities can reduce risk and better protect their devices.
"CYOD and COPE provide organization control while still ensuring employee flexibility."
3. Implement a hybrid approach
Many organizations are still hesitant to fully adopt or implement BYOD policies due to security concerns and management issues. However, there are a number of alternative approaches that support mobile devices in a way that is safe for business use. Using choose your own device or corporate-owned, personally enabled plans could be the best compromise for company and mobile device needs.
CYOD and COPE are becoming more popular business strategies, particularly among highly regulated industries. Infosecurity Magazine contributor Adrian Dain noted that by using these plans, organizations can effectively manage the device while it accesses company material and can easily wipe the hardware if it's lost or stolen. Employees would still get the flexibility they expect by choosing a device they prefer and being able to operate remotely.
BYOD plans are becoming more essential as the mobile workforce increases. By educating employees, creating a detailed plan and implementing a hybridized approach, organizations can bolster their BYOD strategy. For more information on how to implement and utilize mobile technology effectively in your business, contact ISG today.
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