Top 5 BYOD Risks and How an Effective BYOD Policy Can Mitigate Cyber Risks
BYOD or Bring Your Device has proved to be a nearly indispensable part of the modern workplace. According to one recent study, the BYOD market will reach more than $350 billion by 2022, with more significant growth expected in the global BYOD market between 2020 and 2026. However, human workers remain the weakest link in the security chain of most organizations, and BYOD is only complicating matters more.
Thirty-six percent of data breaches resulted from stolen employee credentials (generally through a phishing attack), with almost 100% of those attacks occurring through email.
While BYOD offers excellent flexibility and benefits to employees and employers alike, organizations need to control BYOD with strictly enforced and clearly defined policies to protect company data and the safety of their employees and customers.
If you need help creating an effective BYOD policy at your organization, please contact Managed Security Services.
Defining A BYOD Security Policy
BYOD policies define what applications and assets are accessible from employees’ personal devices and are critical for maintaining company security. To ensure that BYOD meets their expectations for the safe use of business-sensitive data, companies should establish a strict security policy about these devices. Minimum required security controls for devices include:
- Which applications and assets employees are permitted to access from their devices?
- What security controls does the company require for additional security measures on employee-owned devices?
- Who can remotely wipe lost or stolen devices?
- And more.
BYOD policies have been shown to help IT departments get more done with less, promote workplace security and productivity, and support employee creativity in the workplace. Clear company policy established by leadership can motivate employees to ensure their own devices are adequately secured, mainly when that policy includes simple features like requiring a password to turn on or off Wi-Fi or locking a device.
An example of a BYOD policy could include stipulations requiring that all devices be encrypted at a minimum, devices obtain specific security certifications, and designated devices will be approved by IT. These policies provide security between employees’ devices and company data while safeguarding privacy.
The term “bring your own device” (BYOD) can mean many things, but it means bringing a personal device to work. BYOD is becoming increasingly popular among employees because they can use their own devices at work to access files and programs. However, there are many risks involved with BYOD that businesses must be aware of to maintain a secure environment for their data and employees.
Data theft from BYOD
Data theft from BYOD devices is a serious risk that must be managed effectively. Employees can quickly lose or have their devices are stolen, which puts your business at risk of a data breach. Data theft is not just an IT problem; it can also be a legal and financial problem.
Data breaches are costly to businesses. The average data breach cost has been increasing steadily since 2013 (when it was only $2 million) to reach USD 4.24 million in 2021. This doesn’t even include fines or lawsuits resulting from negligence related to managing sensitive information on mobile devices!
By adopting a BYOD policy for your company, you’ll need tools like mobile device management software (MDM) to help prevent these problems before they happen—and recover quickly.
Effective BYOD policy: Lost or stolen devices
One of the biggest BYOD risks for businesses is lost or stolen devices. You should encrypt all sensitive data on your device and ensure it is password-protected. Mobile security apps can help you protect mobile devices, such as laptops and tablets, by remotely wiping all data if they are lost or stolen.
In addition to implementing a security solution on your company’s mobile devices, you should also consider offering employees incentives—and penalties—to keep their devices safe from being lost or stolen.
For example, suppose an employee reports that their phone has been stolen while using it at work (thus violating company policy). In that case, you could deduct money from their paycheck as punishment for breaking policy without permission.
Malware and malicious apps on BYOD devices
Malware is one of the most serious threats to BYOD. The fact that employees are bringing in their own devices means they have greater access to files and data on those devices, which means there’s more opportunity for hackers to gain access through these devices if you’re not careful.
Malware can be used to steal money from your company or steal information from your employees’ accounts. It can also be used as a way for both foreign and domestic spies to spy on corporate secrets and collect information about your customers, making it an attractive target for cyber criminals who want easy access to your systems and networks.
Companies can face serious legal issues if BYOD is not managed correctly. These legal issues include data theft, privacy and security concerns, data ownership, protection of intellectual property (IP), and contract issues between the employee and employer.
This is where having a good BYOD policy will help you avoid these problems:
- Data protection – You’ll need to ensure that your employee’s data isn’t accessed without permission or copied without authorization. This also means making sure they don’t share confidential information with other people using their devices at work or when they’re away from it—including members of your team.
Effective BYOD policy: Insufficient employee training
Employees need to know how to use their devices safely and securely, which means proper device management (concerning both the physical device and its software) and appropriate application usage. The same goes for BYOD programs—your employees should be trained on safe mobile device usage before being allowed to bring them into the office.
A lack of BYOD policies or procedures can also lead to issues with compliance that could eventually put you at higher risk for fines or lawsuits if someone uses a personal device for work purposes without permission from an employer.
These five BYOD risks are just a few of the many that can impact your business. The best way to mitigate them is through careful planning and preparation. If you have questions about how to protect yourself and your company from BYOD risks, feel free to contact Managed Security Services.
Post courtesy: Cyber74, Cybersecurity Solutions Provider.