More and more companies are implementing bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies, as the policies save money, increase employee productivity, and create happier workspaces.
However, with the convenience of these policies also comes risks. Employee devices are responsible for half of the data breaches at companies with BYOD policies.
There will likely be a set of company guidelines within this policy to mitigate this risk, but how can companies ensure compliance?
Ensuring BYOD Policy Compliance
Below are seven ways companies can ensure BYOD policy compliance.
Identifying Devices That Are Permitted
When letting employees use their own devices, there will inevitably be various mobile devices brought into the office. The company should make permitted devices clear from the start.
The main issue with having different types of devices is the ability of an IT department to become familiar with them if there is an issue. iPhones and Androids have entirely different operating systems, and Samsung and Windows phones have their own.
It is up to the company to decide how IT will be handled. Since sensitive company information will be on the devices, it’s best to address problems in-house. A clear list of operating systems and devices permitted can help avoid tricky situations when one crashes.
Carefully Choose App Technology
It’s crucial that for applications downloaded and used on the same devices containing sensitive company info, a policy is strict on the types of applications employees can have.
Be careful to avoid applications that may contain security loopholes and be prepared to intercede if an unsecured app slips through the cracks. Users can usually identify safe apps through features on their mobile store listing.
Maintain Strict Passwords For BYOD Compliance
This advice may seem like a no-brainer, but companies must have clear password policies for their various applications. The more secure a password is, the less likely it is for a hacker to be able to get into the device or program.
Employees should have a different password for every application on their device, including the device’s passcode. Passwords should be complex and contain upper-case and lower-case letters, numbers, and symbols.
It’s also crucial that employees don’t store their passwords on their devices.
Make Sure Devices Have Updated Security Software
Another important step in keeping things secure is ensuring employees have updated security software loaded onto their devices. Antivirus and anti-malware software are available for mobile devices; some come from well-known computer antivirus companies.
These apps add an extra layer of security to block suspicious ads and keep hackers from breaching the phone.
Limit Public Network Risks
Businesses need to educate employees on the risks of using devices on public networks. Cybercriminals know these unsecured networks are great ways to hack into personal information on guests’ devices.
If employees must connect to a public network, having them use a virtual private network (VPN) is a good practice. VPNs encrypt a device’s data, securing it from potential hackers.
Have a Clear Plan for Employee Exits
Even the best companies will inevitably have turnover. When an employee exits with a device previously used for work, someone must remove the company data from the phone.
The simplest way to do this is by having the employee perform a factory reset on the device. Modern devices allow certain apps and contacts to be backed up in the cloud, minimizing employee inconvenience.
Use an MDM Program
One of the best ways to have a secure BYOD policy is to use a mobile device management (MDM) program.
These programs allow company IT departments to manage, monitor, and secure the business aspects of employee devices. They have features such as GPS tracking and the ability to wipe stolen devices and add extra security measures to each device remotely.
It’s good for companies to have a transparent policy for using an MDM program, so employees know what to expect.
Taking Advantage of a BYOD Workplace
The benefits of a BYOD workplace outweigh the risks of letting employees use their devices. The data speaks for itself. Companies with BYOD policies have happier and more productive workers. Having proper policy enforcement will help maintain company and employee satisfaction.