CEO’s: Are You Ready for a “Bring Your Own Device” Revolution?

For business leaders flirting with a "bring your own device" (BYOD) transformation, here are four points to consider.

2. How fast is your company growing?

For fast-growing small businesses, BYOD allows employees to work together no matter where they are. This can be invaluable in quick growth situations requiring on-the-go access to shared files. While any policy for BYOD needs to be flexible to allow for growth, there are a few standard items which are essential.

All company leaders should:

– Maintain a company log of all device serial numbers and other important information in case of accidental loss or theft.
– Set a policy for usage guidelines and positive incentives for employees who regularly update necessary security measures like anti-virus software and passwords.
– Establish a termination procedure for employees who leave or are terminated. Sensitive data can be compromised remotely from previously approved devices if nothing is done when the employee leaves the company.
– Offer support and on-going training related to the specific security issues inherent to the nature of the business.
– Set-up open communication channels to address any issues as they arise; adjust the policy accordingly so that the policy reflects the current needs of employees.

Working with a consultant in cyber security who can assist in the progression of the BYOD transformation may offer ways to troubleshoot potential snags as employees adapt to a BYOD workplace setting.

3. How sensitive is shared information?

Taking time to examine how sensitive information is stored on the company network is important before allowing across the board access and file sharing. Most often, many safeguards can be put into place by setting various levels of access to sensitive information.

Cyber criminals who hack into a network and steal data are one threat, but more often, security breaches are accidental in nature, for instance by a thumb drive being left behind. With files not properly protected, sensitive information can be lost accidentally, as well. Working with experienced IT professionals who have handled BYOD transformations can be invaluable to plan for the unexpected.

The advantages of a BYOD policy are numerous and the risks should not dampen the entrepreneurial momentum driving a successful expansion. At the same time, knowledge and safeguarding sensitive information is a vital component of such a shift in company culture.


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