Personal Devices in the Workplace
5th July 2012 · 0 Comments
There’s a big push going on in today’s fast-paced business world — in the form of data being pushed to personal devices ranging from laptops to smartphones. As technology allows employees to remain connected to their data from any point on Earth equipped with Internet access, an increasing number of companies large and small have embraced “cloud computing” as a central part of their IT. Employers can now push email and calendar updates automatically to Blackberries, iPhones, Android devices and other popular mobile tools. But these tools are also being used for personal data — and that can spell trouble.
Misuse of your company’s IT network can have disastrous consequences. If your employees are surfing inappropriate or virus-ridden sites, posting personal attacks through a corporate channel and so on, you could face legal liabilities as well as breaches of your own IT security. And what happens if a disgruntled employee “loses” your portable device, with all the sensitive data it contains?
There are things you can do to protect your company. First of all, you must establish an acceptable use policy for personal devices and make all employees agree to follow it. But you can’t stop there. One study found that 73 percent of surveyed employees either don’t feel that those policies are enforced or regard them as the IT department’s concern, not the employee’s. So you must equip your company with technological safeguards as well. Your IT department can also take the reins on network access through user authorization and password controls, granting specific permission levels for each user. You should be able lock or track a device that goes missing. You might even want to issue business-only devices that you can remotely wipe if lost or stolen.
What kind of personal device policy does your company enforce? Tell us about it!