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Prioritize mobile device security, even if your company does not

Prioritize mobile device security, even if your company does not

3/31/2014

The bring-your-own-device trend is an exciting part of the modern business world, and everyone seems to be enjoying the benefits that enterprise mobility affords. Employees are granted the freedom to use their own smartphones for work purposes, eliminating the hassle of switching between personal devices and corporate-issued ones. Upper management can save money, as they no longer have to purchase company-owned devices for their workers to use. However, it seems that both employees and their managers are ignoring one key issue - mobile device security.

Research shows companies are ill-prepared to fight data theft
Absolute Software Corporation recently published the results of its "2013 Mobile Enterprise Risk Survey," which surveyed 750 workers involved in BYOD programs. The study does not reflect well upon employees' handling of corporate data. More than one-third of workers who lost their phones made no changes to their mobile habits, leaving them just as likely to suffer the same fate in the future.

Lack of BYOD knowledge is another major concern, as almost a quarter of employees reported that they do not know their firm's policies regarding the loss or theft of a device containing sensitive data. Workers are not completely at fault here. It is advisable for employees to inquire about their company's BYOD strategies, but business leaders also need to take it upon themselves to educate their entire staff.

"If firms don't set clear policies that reflect the priority of corporate data security, they can't expect employees to make it a priority on their own," said Tim Williams, director of product management at Absolute Software.

Unfortunately, it seems that many decision-makers are not yet on the same page as Williams. According to research from Deloitte, only 12 percent of organizations have implemented a comprehensive mobile security program - one that accounts for governance, technology and employee training. This statistic is especially surprising considering that 33 percent of respondents believed unauthorized devices had accessed their company's intranet.

"The data is telling," concludes ProtectCELL CMO Scott McLaren. "Protecting proprietary information is vital to the success of any corporation. It would seem that many companies either aren't taking this seriously or they simply don't know their options."

McLaren adds, "With the conducting of business via personal employee devices becoming more common, organizations need to make mobile security a priority. Fortunately, there are customized protection options available for any company with alternatives ranging from wholesale pricing to employee discounts."

Don't let your guard down
Regardless of what your firm's BYOD policy - or lack thereof - entails, be sure to make mobile device security a personal priority. ProtectCELL's data protection program can safeguard your data in ways that most mobile device management and cell phone insurance plans cannot. With ProtectCELL, you can back up the information that matters and erase the data you don't want phone thieves to see.

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