Living in the Valley, it seems that everyone is carrying around the latest device or gadget – people are using mobile devices in situations not imaginable a decade ago for both business and leisure – all in different places, connecting to networks that may or may not be secure.
Last week, thousands of people around the world stood in line for the iPhone 5s and there were even fights that broke out, which we’ll fondly remember as, “The Mobile Color Wars”. Thanks to its biometric fingerprint scanner, the iPhone 5s can now be positioned as one of the more secure mobile devices available to businesses and has been a key topic of discussion surrounding BYOD and enterprise security.
Since millions of employees are using BYOD, what really needs protecting is the content, apps and information both on device and in the cloud. So when we look at the latest trend in BYOD it’s really become BYOx. What’s running holistically inside the device is the “x” factor.
While there is a lot of discussion about this topic, here are some things companies can do to take the first step with BYOx:
- Get it in writing. Establish a clear policy for your employees and mobile workforce around apps, content and devices – you can create different ranges of acceptability. For example, you can design a policy for corporate devices that allow for replacement or renewal after a predefined time, which can alert managers or IT when a renewal is needed. Most corporate devices or BYOD devices that leave the company can be wiped of the corporate data; most MDM solutions have this capability. Companies can offer a range here – as in most cases, de-enrolling of the device does most of the job and then the employee is responsible to remove any remaining data as needed.
2. All Aboard! Get buy-in for policy from IT/CIO and security teams as needed.
3. If you build it, they will come. Create internal social wiki space for all staff to access published policy and related mobile content.
4. Contain your content. Think about apps and content that need to be secured. Mobile content management can help you secure the content from apps you are using both in the cloud and on device.
5. Sharing doubles the fun. Distribute a few corporate and/or 3rd party mobile apps that help increase broad staff productivity.
Regarding BYOD at SAP, Mike Golz, SAP Americas CIO states, “For private devices, there is no restriction as to when a device can be replaced or upgraded. At the time of the retirement of a device, the enrollment in our MDM solution (SAP Afaria) ends and with this corporate e-mail/calendar/VPN is automatically removed from the device. Since the mission-critical apps access backend data in online mode using certificates access is cut off when the enrollment ends. Users are bound by our mobile policy and consent form.”
Don’t think superficially about devices – think about all of the aspects of mobility and what lies beneath the surface – the “x” factor!
Stay tuned for the next installment in this series where we’ll take a look at BYOA (apps).
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