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Keeping Things Secure In A BYOD Environment

More people than ever are using their own personal devices to do their jobs.
More people than ever are using their own personal devices to do their jobs.

More people than ever are using their own personal devices to do their jobs.

Bring Your Own Device, or BYOD if you’re one of the cool kids, has grown in popularity in the business world. Even companies that insist that BYOD is not for them are finding that their policies are quietly being circumvented by employees who want to get in on the action.

This rise in popularity is hardly surprising. It saves companies the expense of equipping employees with mobile devices while letting them use one they prefer.

Unfortunately, BYOD brings with it a pretty significant downside, and that’s in the area of security. How can you possibly keep your company’s data secure when everyone has a different device, varying degrees of safety, and a dazzling array of apps? Here is how you can get some peace of mind and security.

Your VPN Should Use HTTPS

The HTTPS protocol offers a greater degree of security to your Virtual Private Network (VPN). According to the article“How to Assure VPN is as Secure as You Need it to Be in a BYOD Environment”, pages protected by HTTPS are less vulnerable to direct attack, and don’t suffer from IPv6 leakage.

Encrypt All Corporate Data

If the data has anything at all to do with the company and how it operates, then it needs to be encrypted. That way, even if there is some BYOD-related leak, the result is simply gibberish.

Establish A Consistent Password Protocol

No one employing BYOD should be allowed to get away with having weak passwords. A weak password is the most common vulnerable point of any network. That is a shame since implementing a tougher password is so easy to do. No one should be able to access corporate networks by having a sign-in password called PASSWORD.

For that matter, everyone with a BYOD should also be employing lock-screen protection on top of strong passwords.

Require Everyone To Keep Updates Current

Users need to make sure that their operating system has been made current via means of the latest patches and updates. Upgrades usually have the latest information on things like malware and viruses, so it’s important to stay up to date.

Bring In A Mobile Security Management Suite

Some suites easily integrate into your environment and keep out anyone who’s not following the protocols. These suites can protect the document, device, or application level, and require that every employee enroll and be vetted. If they don’t cooperate, they don’t get access, plain and simple.

Don’t Allow Offline Access

BYOD users who want to download sensitive information must be connected to the company’s network. Data must not be allowed to be accessed and downloaded to a local device. This policy may seem like a no-brainer, but it bears mentioning since sometimes users find themselves with that opportunity.

Make Sure Everyone’s On Board

Again, this seems like common sense, but you’d be surprised. Everyone in the company who is using BYOD must officially go “all in”, and know what the rules and policies are. Ignorance of procedures is no excuse. And this means, everyone, top to bottom, no matter how high up the chart they are.

If you need some more insights into BYOD, check out “5 Reasons Why A BYOD Policy Is Beneficial”.

Written By

Born in the Boston area in 1959, I started writing in 1985. I live in Nashua NH with my wife and three cats. We have four kids in our blended family. I am an utter geek who's into gaming, horror, SF/fantasy, the Red Sox, trains, running, history, and a bunch of other things.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Irene Fenswick

    April 13, 2016 at 8:03 am

    Great tips. Your article is very helpful.

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