February 18, 2016 – Today the average person owns 5 devices, with 3.5 devices (e.g. iPad, laptop) being carried at work. Companies have quickly begun to allow their employees to use personal devices to conduct work-related tasks, but without considering the hidden business risks associated with BYOD.

Allowing your employees to use their personal devices to share data leads to serious concerns around data protection and prevention. Here are the top hidden risks and costs of unsecure mobile devices at work, and why you need to consider Mobile Device Management (MDM).

Containerization of data

Companies allow BYOD because it provides business functionality, flexibility and accessibility to employees. People are able to work more efficiently and be more productive, whether they are in the office or out. Work is no longer a place, it’s wherever you are at any moment in time. That’s why having secure, intuitive access to the company’s data and applications is critical to productivity in the “real world”.

What many companies don’t consider when adopting a BYOD environment are any potential business risks that come from not having any proper security and policies in place – leaving data unprotected and subject to leakage.

When there is not a plan in place for a BYOD approach what gets missed is corporate control over multiple devices. In order to implement a secure and effective strategy, you need to implement a BYOD corporate policy and a solution that includes MDM. Mobile Device Management reduces your business risk by managing all your employees’ devices under one console. You contain the data, monitor it, control it, and protect it. If an issue arises from a personal device (e.g. virus) you will be able to contain and resolve that issue in a secure and timely manner.

Penalties and Fees

When you don’t control the flow of your corporate data you are putting your company at high risk for not meeting compliance requirements for HIPAA, banking, customers, or partners.

Under HIPAA, for example, there are severe penalties that are tied to every individual piece of information that leaks. These penalties – in the nature of fees – are substantial and could shut down your business.

And don’t think that your business is not big enough to be hit. Any industry that has valuable assets (e.g. medical records, phone numbers, social security numbers, and merger information) is susceptible to regulation. Protecting your data across mobile devices will save you money in the long term.

MDM focuses on a cost avoidance approach. It reduces exposure of corporate data, while monitoring any suspicious activity. It can locate and lock lost or stolen data from any device, and can also remove or restore data from any mobile device. MDM also allows you to target different groups within your company with customized policies. For example, your HR staff might need more protection than other departments since they deal with a greater amount of confidential data.

There are real tangible business reasons that drive your business staff to use the personal devices at work in order to be productive – they just need to be secured and controlled. Without anyone meaning to be malicious, companies can lose control of confidential data, putting at risk their customers and their businesses. Mobile Device Management puts that control back in place, regardless of the device your employees are using.

If you are not sure how to start with MDM, partnering with an IT consulting company like Coretek can be cost efficient and reduce your stress. Coretek helps companies understand the risk associated with leaving your data unprotected. Based on your current needs, we provide the most suitable solution to prevent any unpleasant and costly security surprises. For more information, please visit Coretek here.