BYOD and Your Business Technology: Why BYOD Policies Are Key to Success
Bring Your Own Device: Right for Your Office IT?
Another day, another acronym…Things have changed over the years and while BYO (Bring Your Own) may have different meanings depending where you find yourself, the popularity and importance of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) has continued to grow rapidly over the last few years.
Why Are Businesses Choosing BYOD?
Organizations and businesses throughout the Bay Area have taken note of the:
- Cost-Savings Opportunities
- Employees’ Preferences
- Streamlining Potential
- And the Benefits of Greater Flexibility
Associated with allowing employees to bring and use their own personal laptops and mobile devices at work.
Before you introduce BYOD into your workplace, it is crucial for your organization to identify, recognize and address the potential impacts of providing full business access on employee-owned devices to your files, your data security, your business operations and even your clients.
How to get started: Proactively implement policies and procedures to govern their use from the very beginning.
Think of it this way, you want the tracks in place, headed in the right direction before you start running the train.
Why Do We Need An Official BYOD Policy?
It’s hard to remember, but those daily details such as not saving work-related login credentials may seem obvious to one user, yet could easily appear completely benign to the next.
Without the context provided by employer education or at the very minimum, a BYOD Policy (and possibly Mobile Device Management, or MDM Policy), what at first seems like a simple, seamless transition can accidentally spin out of control into a company-wide data breach or worse.
But IT Security Is Simple! It’s Common Sense, Right?
What starts out as a small concern can easily go undetected and spiral out of control when well-intentioned yet uninformed users are behind the wheel. Rh
The effects of simple “ut oh” mistakes from well-intentioned yet uninformed users are exponentially magnified as soon as devices with unstandardized configurations, a hodgepodge of unapproved softwares and unknown applications gain access to your computer network, services or advanced IT management solutions.
When your configurations and installations are completed on-the-go, whenever a user sees fit, it’s common for key security safeguards such as antivirus installations and regular updates to fall through the cracks undetected.
While this may not always present a problem on a day-to-day business, but as soon as an attack slips through, you’re suddenly finding yourself trying to put out a five-alarm fire with a garden hose…
When it comes to BYOD, your employees have the capacity to make decisions which can have far-reaching (and sometimes unintended) consequences.
For example, if one of your veteran employees just purchased a brand-new MacBook Pro…and for convenience…and because they like it more… they started bringing that laptop to work.
Now that same employee has been thoroughly enjoying having all of their work files, credentials, and possibly even sensitive client information that they need to complete their job on their go-to device…
Fast forward, and now it’s Monday morning.
- That same employee is frantically telling you about how they were tying up some loose ends over the weekend…
- They were just a few steps away from their table, ordering another coffee, when a thief ran by, scooped up their beautiful new MacBook, and ran
- They can’t believe it, happened right in the middle of working- fully logged in, device unlocked, and with a report containing secured client information open.
Soon it starts to sink in… All of the project details, sensitive client information and even the small quick-reference workbook filled with your company’s account logins have been compromised.
But My Employees Would Never Try to Harm Us!
Clearly not, you trust your team, and you’re worked hard to find the right people for your Bay Area business. When BYOD fails, it’s usually obvious there was no malicious intent, just like scenario above. (And in the rare instances where malicious intent is at hand, a conversation on “social engineering” and “insider attacks” would be necessary.)
Yet it’s simple, unplanned events such as these which can leave you fighting to protect the precious intangibles of your business such as client trust and confidence in your capabilies as well as their security.
This es exactly why BYOD Policies are crucial. When employee owned devices are not fully discussed, their access levels examined and their rights agreed upon, the “grey” area becomes a danger-zone. .
Throughout your years working in Bay Area businesses and organizations, you’ve seen time and again know that the success of any process, procedure or campaign boils down to buy-in.
No matter how detailed, well thought out and comprehensive a policy document is, if users don’t understand or don’t care or know it won’t be enforced, a BYOD policy becomes useless.
How Do I Set My Business Up For BYOD Success?
When you have expert resources, make sure you use them!
You know the ins and outs of your organization’s operations, but when it comes to the details of your business network and advanced technology solutions, make sure you collaborate with your IT services provider to construct practical, easy-to-understand, and simple-to-enforce policies.
By working together you can make sure that:
- Proper IT security measures are being put in place
- They are crafted to be as user-friendly as possible from an end-user’s perspective
When your Bring Your Own Device guidelines and policies are easily understood, well-explained, and consistently enforced, you can rest easier knowing that you have set your users and your business technology solutions up for success.
If you’re considering implementing BYOD in your workplace- Don’t wait, get started on building a strong foundation for your business IT today!
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