From start-ups to conglomerates, the concept of BYOD (bring your own device) in the workplace is becoming more and more popular. While BYOD makes it easy for employees to access information anywhere at anytime, it also poses a threat to company security. With new technology comes new opportunity for hackers to break in and gain access to private information and important company documents.
Here are 10 ways a company can protect themselves with BYOD:
1. Email Security
Think of all the information that is exchanged via email in your company. By using suites like Microsoft Exchange or Office 365, you can protect company emails from being hacked.
Pro Tip: Limit email retention and attachment sizes – this way if the phone is stolen, only x amount of emails can be exposed and large documents (that contain a lot of company info) can’t be downloaded.
2. Require Authentication
Segment users into groups so that only a limited few can access high-security information. With less BYOD devices able to access this classified info, it lowers the threat of outsiders breaking in.
Pro Tip: Use ACLs (access control lists) and VLAN (virtual local area network) to help maintain control over users, protocols and network access.
3. Layers of Protection
Add extra layers of network defense to make sure only trusted devices have wireless access. This helps the company keep control over which BYOD devices can access resources.
Pro Tip: Have users authenticate themselves to the domain controller to keep company network access secure.
4. BYOD Rules Rule
Clearly establish what is and isn’t company acceptable for BYOD use. Then enforce these rules by using firewalls to block access from certain file types, websites, protocols or anything NSFW (Not Suitable For Work).
Pro Tip: Firewalls, IPS (Intrusion Prevention System) and IDS (Intrusion Detection System) can also help block malicious or “frowned upon” programs.
5. Lost Device Process
Everyone from the intern’s intern to the CEO can lose a device. Make sure you have a process in place, such as shutting down company network access from the device or wiping the device of all corporate data.
Pro Tip: Add encryption software to devices to protect high priority info.
6. Cloud-Based Controls
Have all BYOD devices connect to your company’s cloud network for easy restriction enforcement. By using the cloud, it makes it easy to control, regulate and monitor your entire network.
Pro Tip: Despite recent concern of breaches, the cloud is often more secure than an in-house data center. Plus it provides versatile options and security to fit your business.
7. App Restrictions
By only allowing app downloads from trusted and approved stores, you can protect BYOD devices from malware.
Pro Tip: If a blacklisted app is installed, disable access to network. This helps prevent the risk of anyone hacking into private company info.
8. BYOD Passwords
Encourage employees to create secure passwords to unlock their BYOD devices. No matter if it is a laptop, tablet or smartphone, having a password discourages hackers and makes it harder for them to break in.
Pro Tip: Don’t make passwords an important number or easily hackable, require special characters and capital letters to make the device more secure.
9. Search Safely
Educate employees on malicious websites, ads, apps and more that they should beware of. Just taking the time to clarify the different malware can prevent a security breach that could cost your company money, time, clients and reputation.
Pro Tip: Smaller devices, like smartphones, are more prone to harmful links.
10. Create a BYOD Policy
By clearly establishing company standards with an acceptable-use policy, it helps to define rules and protocols for all employees. Also, explain who is responsible for device maintenance, support, costs and data protection.
Pro Tip: We have the 10 steps you need to create a BYOD policy that will protect your company’s security.