BYOD Risk High Among Retail, Financial Services Organizations
Personal devices are not the only devices placing retail and financial service institutions at risk, the study indicated.Although one in four retail and financial service employees participate in bring your own device (BYOD) programs, 15 percent of companies have no policy in place, according to the results of the ThreatMetrix 2012 State of Cyber-Crime study, conducted by Info-Tech Research Group. The study, which is based on a survey of 200 U.S. business managers and IT executives within retail and financial services organizations on their level of cyber-security-planning and fraud-prevention solutions, indicated this lack of policy could pose a huge risk to the business and its customers, as employees’ personal devices could unwittingly expose corporate documents to fraud and malware. "While BYOD often enables a more efficient and productive workplace, businesses cannot ignore the additional risk of unknown devices connecting to corporate networks," ThreatMetrix Chief Technology Officer Andreas Baumhof said in a statement. "As BYOD becomes commonplace across industries, a layered security approach, including device identification and malware protection is crucial to protect corporate and customer data." Personal devices are not the only devices placing retail and financial service organizations at risk, the study found. Of the companies surveyed, 31 percent allow employees to access work devices for personal use and barely half of organizations limit the personal activities that employees can perform on company devices. One in four companies surveyed said they even allow employees to download software without approval.
"Retail and financial service organizations need preventative measures in place to protect both corporate and employee-owned devices from today’s highly sophisticated cyber-crime threats," Baumhof continued. "Ensuring that every device can be safely used in the workplace is a challenge for which few organizations are prepared. However, implementing robust BYOD policies and cyber-crime-prevention solutions can stop cyber-criminals in their tracks and protect sensitive data."