10 Things to Consider Before Adopting a BYOD Program

 
 
By Nathan Eddy  |  Posted 2014-08-07 Email Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

The proliferation of mobile devices at work and in people's private lives is changing attitudes in the businesses world as to what role mobility and privacy play, leading many to implement bring-your-own-device (BYOD) initiatives without more carefully considering the myriad security concerns such a program can bring. To that end, the Information Security Community on LinkedIn, an online community of more than 200,000 information security professionals, and Vectra Networks, a specialist in real-time detection of in-progress cyber-attacks, conducted their second annual BYOD & Mobile Security Study. The report indicated just 21 percent of their organizations have fully implemented BYOD policies, processes and infrastructure. In addition, nearly a quarter (24 percent) of respondents' organizations have no mobile device policy. Along these same lines, 21 percent of respondents said that privately owned devices are widely in use in their organizations, but are not supported within their organizations. The study also indicated BYOD adoption, despite security concerns, is on the rise—BYOD budgets will increase for 25 percent of businesses surveyed, while budgets will remain flat for 33 percent. Only 6 percent said they anticipate budget decreases. If your organization is adopting a BYOD program, here are 10 takeaways from the study to consider.

 
 
 
  • 10 Things to Consider Before Adopting a BYOD Program

    by Nathan Eddy
    1 - 10 Things to Consider Before Adopting a BYOD Program
  • Keeping Employees Mobile a Major Driver

    The survey indicated that the key drivers for BYOD are keeping employees mobile (57 percent), satisfied (56 percent) and productive (54 percent), with smartphones—used by 87 percent of respondents—the dominant form factor among supported mobile devices, followed by laptops (79 percent) and tablets (68 percent).
    2 - Keeping Employees Mobile a Major Driver
  • iOS, Android and Windows Phone Are Most Popular

    Among all mobile devices considered for BYOD (including smartphones, tablets and laptops), Apple's iOS is still the dominant mobile platform at 76 percent. BlackBerry (40 percent) declined in popularity compared with last year, slipping 8 percent, while Google's Android platform (69 percent) and Microsoft Windows Phone (66 percent) are gaining in popularity. Microsoft saw the largest gain in adoption, rising 15 percent compared with 2013.
    3 - iOS, Android and Windows Phone Are Most Popular
  • Productivity Apps Popular, but Carry Security Risk

    While applications designed to boost productivity are the very same applications that can increase the risk of data breaches, intrusions and malware incidents, they are by far the most popular, with 86 percent using email, calendar and contact apps. Second was document access and editing apps (45 percent), followed by access to Sharepoint and intranet (41 percent) and access to company-built applications (34 percent).
    4 - Productivity Apps Popular, but Carry Security Risk
  • Unauthorized Access to Data a Major Concern

    Additional IT resources to manage security incidents (30 percent) are by far the biggest negative impact of mobile security threats, with the biggest BYOD security concerns the loss of company or client data (67 percent), unauthorized access to company data and systems (57 percent) and fear of downloading content or apps with security exploits (47 percent).
    5 - Unauthorized Access to Data a Major Concern
  • Interest in BYOD Varies Widely

    While 20 percent of organizations are working on the policies, processes and infrastructure for BYOD, 21 percent have fully implemented BYOD. Twenty-six percent of survey participants are considering BYOD but have not adopted it yet. Thirteen percent said they have not yet adopted it and have no plans to. Three percent said a BYOD program would not be allowed, and 2 percent adopted programs only to abandon them.
    6 - Interest in BYOD Varies Widely
  • An Evolving Process for Organizations

    For 31 percent of organizations, BYOD is still under evaluation, followed by 26 percent of organizations with privately owned devices in limited use, and 24 percent with widespread use of privately owned devices. Although company-owned devices are widely used by 40 percent of organizations, 21 percent admit to having unsupported personal mobile devices in their organization.
    7 - An Evolving Process for Organizations
  • Password Protection, Encryption Are Popular Security Measures

    The most common risk control measure is password protection (67 percent), followed by remote wiping of data (52 percent) and use of encryption (43 percent). The report cautioned that the rise in extending BYOD to partners, customers and suppliers is resulting in a continued dissolution of the traditional security perimeter and is driving the need for new security strategies and architectures.
    8 - Password Protection, Encryption Are Popular Security Measures
  • Malware Protection, MDM Component Key

    The survey revealed that 43 percent of organizations use mobile device management (MDM) tools to monitor and manage mobile devices, followed by endpoint security tools (39 percent) and network access controls (38 percent). Fewer than a third of respondents (30 percent) employ endpoint malware protection, while a shocking 22 percent employ no tools to manage mobile devices.
    9 - Malware Protection, MDM Component Key
  • BYOD Aimed at Improving Productivity

    Improving employee productivity was cited by 61 percent of respondents as the most important measure of a BYOD program, followed by improvements in security (52 percent), reducing costs (44 percent) and increasing usability (41 percent). Simplifying device management was cited by 39 percent of respondents as the single most important measure of BYOD.
    10 - BYOD Aimed at Improving Productivity
  • Businesses Better at Readying BYOD Programs

    This year, 40 percent of respondents ranked their BYOD readiness at 60 percent or higher, compared with 34 percent last year, indicating that while there is still some way to go toward broad BYOD adoption, organizations are somewhat better prepared for BYOD than a year ago. For 25 percent of organizations, BYOD budgets will increase, while budgets will remain flat for 33 percent.
    11 - Businesses Better at Readying BYOD Programs
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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