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Stay safe with your BYOD smartphone

Stay safe with your BYOD smartphone

5/7/2014

In the modern corporate world, it seems that both company leaders and employees are ecstatic about the bring-your-own-device movement. Thanks to this growing trend, workers gain the convenience of using their smartphones for personal and business purposes. Meanwhile, their bosses are attracted to the BYOD benefits of reduced hardware costs, enhanced productivity and improved workplace morale. However, there is a major issue associated with enterprise mobility: data security.

The risk of a breach increases significantly when workers are permitted to store sensitive corporate information on their personal devices. If employees' smartphones are lost or stolen, outsiders could potentially gain access to company secrets. Additionally, BYOD phones make ideal hacking targets for cybercriminals, many of whom are developing malware programs designed to break through security walls and steal corporate data.

With these threats in mind, BYOD participants will want to be especially careful that their devices are well-protected. Not only could data leakage compromise their personal financial stability, it might also jeopardize their employment status.

Keeping corporate information secure
As Realbusiness recently pointed out, mobile workers should avoid sharing company data while connected to free Wi-Fi hotspots. Since these networks usually lack strong security walls, cybercriminals often use them as a platform for data theft attempts.

BYOD employees should make sure that all business-critical data on their smartphones is backed up in a secure location. This will ensure that information remains accessible in the event that a phone is lost, stolen or wiped.

New ICO plan offers data protection guidance
According to ComputerWeekly, the Information Commissioner's Office released a new corporate plan that could help company leaders and employees make their BYOD practices more secure. The source noted that the document intends to provide individuals with advice regarding developments in technology, government and business. Additionally, the plan seeks to create a fair balance between transparency, privacy and data protection.

Realbusiness noted that the ICO stressed the use of encryption whenever possible. This will provide an extra layer of protection against cybercrime. Mobile users should also check to see that websites are encrypted before entering personal information. One easy rule of thumb to remember is that the addresses of encryption-protected sites begin with "https" rather than "http."

Data theft can have an extremely detrimental impact on both workers and their firms. Fortunately, ProtectCELL's data protection plan gives mobile users an edge over cybercriminals. The program provides security beyond what cell phone insurance can offer, letting individuals back up important work documents and erase personal information from lost or stolen devices.

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