BYOD is a burgeoning trend. People receive work emails on their personal smartphones, use their home computers to work remotely and think nothing of using personal USB sticks to hold work documents on as they flit between work and home.
Many businesses have introduced policies and procedures to support this new way of working, and even embraced it. However, Gartner forecasts that 20% of BYOD policies will fail by 2016. While employees like the benefits of BYOD, they don't like the restrictions placed on the use of their own devices and are likely to rebel. Even if businesses refuse to allow BYOD, there's no way of enforcing this, apart from preventing a direct connection to the network.
The rise of BYOD means that businesses not only have to protect against issues with the device, but also with the habits and behaviours of the user. In the future, securing the corporate network will be as much about conversation with employees (and trust) as it will be about stringent security measures.
Business systems are becoming more integrated, boosting productivity and saving time and money. But that interconnectivity brings greater vulnerability. Businesses need strong, secure networks, and reliable, flexible Internet connections (with watertight SLAs) if they want to be prepared for the future that awaits them.
This, of course, has introduced new issues into the workplace. Ten years ago, businesses were deciding whether or not to allow people to access their private email accounts through Hotmail or Yahoo using their work computers. There were concerns about productivity and some employees sending confidential company information to people they shouldn't, but really when we look back on it, would businesses like to go back to this seemingly simpler time?
Businesses now not only have to monitor and secure the internal network of desktop PCs and laptops but everything else that an employee uses for work.
BYOD has revolutionised the way we work, but it has brought not just a headache but a full scale migraine to the IT department when it comes to security and data control.
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