Mobile Devices Still Unsecured in the Workplace

The survey found 43 percent have accessed sensitive corporate data on their personal device while on an unsecured public network.

Ten percent of respondents in a survey conducted by Osterman Research and sponsored by Centrify still do not have a password, PIN or other security measure enabled on the mobile device they use for work purposes, potentially exposing organizations to grave risk.

The survey, which was developed to assess the security sentiment and behavior of enterprise employees that use personal smartphones as their primary mobile device for work, revealed that 15 percent of enterprise employee survey respondents believe they have "none to minimal" responsibility to protect corporate data stored on their personal devices.

"The results show that even employees of large multinational corporations, who are consistently warned of the dangers to their data directly from their IT department, are not keeping security top of mind," Michael Osterman, principal with Osterman Research, said in a statement. "It is clear organizations need to continue to educate employees on the dangers and risks of mobile security but also look to solutions that safeguard the devices and applications which these employees have access to."

Upon losing an unprotected mobile device, 32 percent of respondents would rather contract the flu or go on vacation with their mother-in-law than tell their boss, the survey found.

More than 15 percent have had their personal account or password compromised, and 43 percent said they have accessed sensitive corporate data on their personal device while on an unsecured public network, such as the airport or a coffee shop.

"As these results demonstrate, enterprise employees still need to be aware of security threats and best practices," Centrify CEO Tom Kemp said in a statement. "We have made it our mission to bring security awareness to the enterprise, but there is always room for more education and innovation. As the survey shows, corporate employees are now leveraging applications on their devices to get their jobs done. As a result, there is greater need than ever for unified security identity across multiple devices and platforms."

On average, 45 percent of the enterprise employees surveyed have more than six third-party applications installed on their personal device, suggesting that as bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies become the standard rather than the exception, enterprise employees are mixing work with play, and are storing more corporate data among their personal information.

The survey also found that only 44 percent of respondents are hyper-aware of their mobile security, thinking about their responsibility to protect the corporate information on their personal device on a daily basis.

Nearly 10 percent of respondents think about their responsibility only a few times a year, identifying a real need for secure solutions that keep personal and corporate devices safe.