Failed Security of Smartphones in the Workplace

Smartphones have become prevalent in the workplace both as personal use and business devices. These two functions are distinctly different uses, or should be, and we need to remember that. While I am not advocating that companies establish policies against workers bringing personal use devices into the workplace, many businesses have embraced this, I am strongly suggesting that personal use devices remain just that, personal use devices.

Many companies have stepped across the line and permit personal use devices to become part of the company network. In doing so company information is transmitted and stored on personal devices.  The risks in allowing personal use devices for company business are numerous and potential negative consequences abound  with respect to company communications, intellectual property, regulatory or legal matters, and otherwise.

It is critical that sound information assurance principles are applied to mobile devices and mobile workforce solutions.  It is critical that the organization be able to protect and retrieve its information assets in the case of a lost cell phone, rogue employee, employee termination or otherwise.

While the App Stores for IPhones, Androids, and Blackberrys may seem harmless they pose significant risk to information that is stored and transmitted including sensitive business communications and assets. With personal use devices the owner controls the security, installed application and the permissions to locally stored data including address books, files, email, text messages, and other data.  Additional concerns exist in what application might be vulnerable to hack attacks.

Keep your company data safe, establish the polices understanding what is at risk, and own the device.  For more information contact Network Management Solutions.  Remote managed services, information assurance, systems integration.

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