Are you allowing employee-owned devices on your network? BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) programs are a rising trend as smartphones, tablets and laptops become ever-more powerful. Your employees enjoy the convenience of using their own devices to access their work. For some employees, it makes sense to give them a stipend to use their own device rather than providing them with a device just for work.
Of course you have to be concerned about the security of your BYOD program. You really don’t have any way of knowing how secure your employees’ devices are. Could they be putting your company’s proprietary information at risk?
One way you can make sure your company’s BYOD program is secure is to put someone in charge of monitoring the program. This person enforces the security rules, which should be distributed to all employees as part of an updated IT policy.
Your security officer or team will monitor the use of your employees’ devices. Common security protocols include issuing each employee a separate password to access the company’s servers, installing GPS on the devices that the company can monitor in case a device is stolen, and an automatic shutoff protocol that will deactivate a device if it’s lost or stolen.
Anti-virus and firewall software are mandatory for devices that are used to access company information. Your company can decide which security tools are suitable and purchase them for employees. Giving the security manager or team passwords to employees’ devices also should be mandatory, so the devices can be controlled remotely, if necessary.
Decide what type of devices the company will be able to support with its BYOD program, and don’t allow unauthorized devices to access company servers. If you have employees who use non-supported devices, you’ll have to buy them supported devices at a discount. If employees choose to use these work devices for their personal devices as well, come up with a cost-sharing program for them. Otherwise, their personal and work device must be used separately.
BYOD is already a de facto standard in all types of businesses. The question for IT leaders is no longer “if”, nor even “when?” If you’re not already asking “how?” you’re behind the curve and your organization may begin to suffer.
To learn more about what Wavestone US can do for your company, visit http://www.wavestone.us/capabilities/.
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