BYOD and Enterprise Apps: Corporate Security Vs. Employee Privacy

BYOD and Enterprise Apps

With the right approach to identifying BYOD risk and an effective BYOD policy, organizations can capitalize on the benefits without significant risk.

With the coronavirus pandemic, remote working has become the norm for millions of employees, and companies worldwide are increasingly adopting the BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) model.

Organizations have realized the tremendous productivity gains and cost savings of BYOD programs. While all of this unrestricted mobility has been great for the bottom line, this newfound freedom comes at a price. Any device, network, app, or cloud can be compromised at any given time, making business data and personal privacy vulnerable.

The enterprise security perimeter is all over the place, with business apps and data spread across networks and devices that organizations don’t own or control. This makes way for cybercriminals to take advantage of security gaps to launch all kinds of attacks, such as phishing and device takeovers.

In the past, security professionals could tackle every issue behind a firewall, but that is not a fail proof option anymore. Enterprise mobility is here to stay, and it is up to every CIO to find a way to make enterprise data and user privacy securely co-exist.

Balancing Privacy and Security

With employees using enterprise mobile apps on their phones, enterprise IT needs to ascertain if they are secure. Cyber-criminals are aware that valuable data is stored unencrypted on smartphones, and this data needs to be protected. But, at the same time, IT also needs to protect data without jeopardizing employee privacy. Many enterprise mobility management platforms are significantly intrusive. Organizations need a mobile data protection solution to prevent sensitive information, intellectual property, and valuable assets from falling into the wrong hands.

Read More: Patient Data Breach – Cybercriminals Targeting Healthcare Organizations

A comprehensive mobile data protection solution has become necessary considering the reputation damage and the legal consequences that can happen from just a single breach.

Many BYOD program policies grant organizations an unusual amount of access and monitoring rights. Some organizations even ask their employees to deploy enterprise mobility management (EMM) and Mobile Application Management (MAM) tools. These tools give the organizations access to all the private data on the device and, in some cases, enable enterprise IT to remotely wipe the phone. This leads to employees resenting the unreasonable BYOD program policies that violate their privacy.

CIOs believe enterprise IT needs to change its focus, and instead of securing the devices, they should be securing the enterprise apps the employees use.

As Zero-Trust Security Approach.

Organizations cannot expect end-users to spot malicious links or sophisticated phishing scams no matter how much security training they have gone through.

Read More: Confronting the Cybersecurity Challenges in Financial Services

Organizations need to ensure they have a comprehensive mobile security framework in place that can automatically scan every device, network, cloud service, app, and threat before giving access to business resources. It is of utmost importance for organizations to ensure users can only access authorized corporate data and enforce security policies with ongoing monitoring. Likewise, all the data locally stored in the apps on the device should be encrypted.

BYOD does not mean organizations have to choose between security and employee privacy. If organizations focus on ensuring security for enterprise apps, both corporate and personal data can safely co-exist on the same device, thus boosting employee morale, productivity, and performance.

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