IT Strategy: Secutity Analysis of Bring Your Own Device 

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) has fast become one of the most popular device philosophies of many IT departments. It operates under the assumption that users who are allowed to choose and use their own personal devices for work, as opposed to being given a standardized company device, are more productive. In this article we will look at some of the security risks associated with BYOD, and in the next article, will discuss ways of mitigating that risk.

 

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BYOD: Brief Analysis

BYOD is a relatively new philosophy in the IT world that took off in 2012. Many employees today desire the absolute latest in technology, but also specific branches of technology: such as Mac vs PC, and iPhone vs Android vs Blackberry. BYOD allows individual employees to use the devices that they desire, while still being productive at work by connecting their personal device to the company network. According to a report, the BYOD and Enterprise mobility market was $67 billion in 2011, and is expected to grow to $181 billion by 2017. 

BYOD is ushering in a new term: personal-professional computing. Millions of users are attaching their personal smartphones, laptops, and tablets to the enterprise network at their work place. Understanding the full effect of this is crucial to shaping future IT strategy. 

 

Security Implications

The potential security risks due to BYOD can be massive, if not probably checked. Virtually all enterprise-owned, possibly sensitive data, is being placed into the personal devices of employees. Those devices will leave the work place and several will undoubtably be misplaced or lost at some point. The potential for a disastrous release of sensitive data is very real.

According to a recent study:

BYOD Security

 

As shown by the graph, only a third of companies who have a BYOD policy, have a security policy regarding those devices, and even fewer have some sort of control of those devices. If satisfactory levels are security are to be met, these numbers are not acceptable, and must be dealth with. This will be covered next week, in part 2. 

 

Conclusion

Bring your own device (BYOD) is a relatively new IT policy, and is highly popular today. BYOD has many benefits, but also has increased security risks, as shown by the graphic. Next week, we will look at way to mitigate the risk from BYOD policies.  

 

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