The art of using personal devices without risking business data

May 30, 2014

2014-05-30 BYOD.jpgThe influx of bring-your-own-device and mobile file sharing initiatives is affecting everyday operations for numerous businesses and is raising concerns over security capabilities. While BYOD has become more of a permanent fixture in the work environment, many organizations still struggle to enforce protection measures and ensure that the hardware is safe from potential breaches. The trend is associated both with the benefits it can provide as well as the possible complications involved, but by understanding the needs of BYOD, decision makers can ensure that staff use equipment in a meaningful way without compromising data.

While BYOD may not be as big of an issue for larger organizations with resources to spare, SMBs have several factors to consider when they launch a mobile effort. They must think about the possibility of malware that could bring down their entire system and generate large fines. Although there are many variables in the security equation, by enforcing verification checks, training employees in safety best practices and establishing strong use policies for sensitive information, businesses can better protect their critical assets, according to Forbes contributor Adam Levin. Smaller companies are significantly more vulnerable to potential threats, but mobile access control can help alleviate some of the concerns and ensure that only authorized users are viewing files.

“Many companies are allowing BYOD because they think it saves time and money and is more convenient – which is the exact kind of opening for which data thieves are looking,” Levin wrote. “If you permit BYOD, make sure you don’t allow it to create cracks and crevices in your own security, and that it isn’t compromising your compliance with state data security laws.”

Deterring mobile data loss
Threats are becoming more sophisticated and pose a substantial risk to data protection in the mobile workplace. Although the danger of breaches is increasing, there are steps users can take to ensure that their systems are running and that information is accessible. CIO contributors Kim Lindros and Ed Tittel noted that by educating staff, enforcing regular file backups, establishing policies and designating user privileges, the business will be able to deter potential compromising situations. These efforts will in turn help boost potential benefits and ensure that the company functions at optimal efficiency on a consistent basis.

Organizations can also turn to a secure file sharing platform like Memeo C1 to not only drive data loss prevention efforts, but also ensure that employees have a safe place to collaborate. The system will keep the most recent version of essential files, guaranteeing that users have instant access when they need it and preventing associated data recovery costs. The solution also provides remote wipe capabilities and gives stakeholders more insight into the location of company documents. The protected sharing environment will also be compliant with established safety strategies and industry standards.

“Security policies, standards and procedures establish different requirements on data and information, depending on the lifecycle state (creation, access, use, transmission, storage or destruction),” Lindros and Tittel wrote. “The goal is to protect data in all its forms, on all types of media and in different processing environments, including systems, networks and applications.”