Bring Your Own Device, or BYOD, is an IT policy that, for many companies, is replacing the practice of company-owned devices in the workforce. While carrying numerous beneficial aspects to it, BYOD can give rise to new security issues within an organization. This blog will explore the positive attributes BYOD has to offer an organization’s structure, in addition to some security risks that must be addressed when turning to BYOD in your business.

In any case, BYOD is here to stay, so organizations need to ensure they are properly equipped to leverage this policy.

Benefits to BYOD:

  •  Increases employee efficiency:
    • BYOD allows employees to use their preferred devices, catering to their individual needs and preferences, as opposed to a model the company selects that might not be what they’re familiar with or what works best for them.
    • BYOD also minimizes the amount of devices employees have to handle on a daily basis. Employees no longer have to deal with both company and personal devices, as they will be using the same devices for both work purposes as well as personal use.
  • Saves money:
    • Companies employing BYOD will cut costs since they no longer have to purchase company devices for all staff.
    • In addition to not having to purchase employee devices, companies will also save money on the maintenance costs associated with company devices.
    • When a company supplies employee devices, extras need to be kept on hand, in the scenario that a device is lost or broken.
    • Also with company devices, the organization has to coordinate the phone plans for all employees and invest additional costs into that as well.

Security risks posed by BYOD:

  • Ensuring security of employee personal information:
    • Although companies will want to have processes in place to monitor company data on employee devices, it is important that they are not accessing any of the employee’s personal information without permission from that individual, as that is a violation of employee privacy. Ensuring the respect of employee information is a major concern in any BYOD policy.
  • What happens if an employee loses or has their device stolen?
    • In the case that an employee device is stolen/lost, that individual’s device is now compromised and companies have to proactively implement processes that provide them the ability to remotely wipe company information from that employee’s device, to ensure that the security of the company is not breached.
  • Increased vulnerabilities due to insecure apps:
    • Employees may have vulnerable applications that could increase the probability of the device being hacked and an individual or group gaining access to company information that was not intended for them. If an employee’s device was compromised, valuable company information could not only be at risk, but client information as well.

BYOD is a path that many companies are finding harder and harder to avoid. In order to execute BYOD in your organization and avoid the risks discussed above, it is important to have a plan.

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