The Dangers of a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) Policy
A Bring Your Own Device, or BYOD, policy in a workplace can have several benefits, such as increased familiarity with a system on the part of the employee, and cost savings for the company. However, it can also have some major repercussions, especially if you use Managed IT Services like cloud computing. Presented here are the dangers of this policy that you should be aware of. If you know these dangers, you can adjust your strategies and possibly avoid some of them.
Managing BYOD Security
One of the benefits of having everybody on a company-owned system or using a Managed IT Services provider to handle your needs is that you don’t have as many potential security risks. A BYOD policy means that each employee will be using his or her computer for different purposes, and will often be bringing these devices out of the office. Not having a uniform software setup increases the chance of viruses or exploits getting set up within your system. Having employees bring their devices out of the office on a regular basis also increases the chance that a third party will be able to get their hands on sensitive information that you do not want leaked to the public.
BYOD Acceptable Use
One of the common clauses in a company’s hardware policies- and most contracts offered by managed service providers- is an acceptable use policy. This ensures that an employee won’t use the company’s technology in ways that are inappropriate or risky to the overall business environment. Using a BYOD policy means that you are running the risk of losing control of the way employees use their machines. This makes it much harder to enforce an acceptable use policy. If you are a small business with trustworthy employees, this is not necessarily an issue. However, larger companies can run into some serious problems arising from a BYOD policy.
BYOD Data Retrieval
If you choose to use a BYOD policy for your company, you should make sure to have a plan in place when an employee leaves the business. Data retrieval can be a major issue when you don’t have control over an employee’s work account. You will need to determine what company data needs to be removed from a particular device, and how you plan on making that happen. You could put your former employees on an honor system, but that can be quite dangerous if you rely on proprietary technology or have confidential information pertaining to clients. There are also state confidentiality laws to consider, and you should make sure you have a way to meet all of those requirements.
A BYOD workplace can provide some excellent savings in terms of technological costs, and can boost employee morale. However, there are several logistical problems that you should be aware of. Some of these issues can be resolved through cloud computing and desktop virtualization software, but not all of them. If you are thinking about employing such a policy in your workplace, it’s best to plan ahead and have a way around the pitfalls above first.
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