What is Bring Your Own Device (BYOD)

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) is simply allowing workers to use their own gadgets for work. This might include everything from their own telephones to iPads to computers.

Why do businesses adopt BYOD?

Switching to BYOD has a lot of cost benefits, just like other company decisions. Purchasing hardware for all of your employees can be prohibitively expensive, as any SME founder can tell you between grimaces. As a result, allowing employees to utilize their own equipment boosts a company’s bottom line right away. According to a survey on BYOD, organizations that use it save on average $350 per person each year.

It’s not all about the money, though. BYOD gives workers more control over the technologies they use at work. Anyone who has used an Apple laptop at home and a Windows PC at work (or vice versa) understands how inconvenient it can be to switch operating systems frequently. So why not give your people the opportunity to make their own decisions?

Furthermore, bringing your own device (BYOD) can boost productivity. According to the same Cisco survey, employees who use their own devices save an average of 81 minutes each week, or nine working days per year. Furthermore, it has the potential to increase staff morale. According to Samsung research, 78 per cent of respondents stated it helped them create a better work-life balance.

What does Cyber Essentials have to do with it?

So, BYOD has numerous advantages and is growing in popularity in the UK — 45 per cent of UK firms have some form of BYOD strategy in 2018. But how does this relate to Cyber Essentials? It’s rather easy. Any gadget used for work is likely to connect to corporate networks and access corporate data. This poses a threat to security.

Employees utilizing their own devices to access business networks and data can cause a slew of issues. Security tools on personal devices are frequently inferior to those on work devices. On their own devices, employees are less likely to adhere to tight security rules. And there’s plenty of data to show that when we use our own laptops and phones, we all participate in hazardous behavior.

All of this puts your company at an excessive threat level. But it doesn’t mean you should abandon your BYOD aspirations.

Is BYOD covered by Cyber Essentials?

If a device is used to connect to the corporate network or access any business information, it falls within the Cyber Essentials umbrella. This includes working on your personal computer after hours, accessing the business’ Google Drive, and even checking work emails on your phone.

It’s all too easy to slip into the trap of treating personal gadgets as if they were a different creature from work. But that isn’t the case in many of our professional lives. In our “always-on” society, personal and professional lives tend to bleed into one another, especially in an era when many of us work from home.

This means you must guarantee that all work devices, whether personal or company-provided, adhere to the Cyber Essentials precepts. For example, making sure security settings are turned on and up-to-date, anti-malware software is installed, and programs are updated regularly.

What if your company doesn’t have a formal BYOD policy in place?

Even if your company doesn’t have a formal BYOD policy, it’s critical to protect yourself against the threat of personal devices.

To guarantee that cybercriminals do not get access to the company, we urge that every employee install end-point security software on every device from which they may access work. The end-point security software so long as it conforms to cyber essentials will need to be updated regularly and perform daily scans on the device as well as scanning the websites you visit.

BYOD can completely change the way your company approaches procurement. However, if technology is to be liberating rather than a liability, excellent cyber hygiene is required. So, if you’re thinking about using BYOD, start by earning your Cyber Essentials certification.

Best Practices for Implementing a Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) Security Policy

Ensure that your employees are well-informed on security.

Most BYOD-related security issues are caused by human mistakes. It’s crucial to establish a BYOD security strategy, but it’s also critical and obligatory to educate your employees about it. Your workers should be aware of what they can and cannot do with their personal devices, why security measures are important, and what will happen if they violate the policy.

Employees must realize that having a BYOD strategy will safeguard the entire company from data breaches and other cybersecurity concerns.

Setting Security Requirements

Organizations should make essential security measures mandatory to encourage staff to become used to following security best practices.

To decrease the risk of exposing company data, a strong BYOD policy should require workers to maintain their personal devices password-protected at all times (and utilize multi-factor authentication), consider utilizing a Virtual Private Network (VPN), and antivirus solutions.

Inquire with the IT Department about registering.

When devices connected to the network are registered with the IT department, their visibility improves. This may simply be included in the new employee and device onboarding process.

An administrator can rapidly discover illegal connections by comparing the list of registered devices to the list of connected devices.

Figure out who owns what data.

We can find a mix of personal and business data, such as contacts, files, calendars, and work emails, on devices that follow a BYOD policy. Employees must be told that their personal information will remain under their sole control. Besides, specify which data belongs to your company.

Implement a software application for mobile device management (MDM).

MDM software enables IT to automate any device that is directly linked to a company’s network, such as laptops, printers, cell phones, and tablets, as well as regulate and safeguard their administrative rules.

MDM software provides an infallible technique for remotely removing private data from a device that has been stolen, misplaced, or corrupted.

Even if it is not recommended to store confidential data such as business financial information on a BYOD, such devices may come into contact with sensitive information.

Consider implementing an employee exit policy.

It is critical to understand that corporate data must be erased from a device owned by an employee who has opted to quit the company. Creating a set of exit procedures for safely withdrawing business data while retaining the integrity of the employee’s personal information is one way.

Don’t forget to back up your employee’s data and content before removing company data from their smartphone.

UK Cyber Security Ltd is here to help

Please check out our Cyber Essentials Checklist

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If you would like to know more, do get in touch as we are happy to answer any questions. Looking to improve your cybersecurity but not sure where to start? Begin by getting certified in Cyber Essentials, the UK government’s scheme that covers all the technical controls that will provide the protection that you need to help guard against criminal attacks. Or just get in touch by clicking contact us

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