Mobile threats at a glance: What’s putting your data at risk?

Michael Edstrom Blog, Functional Mobility Leave a Comment

Enterprise mobility doesn’t have to be an antithesis to data security. With some insight into mobile threats and solutions to mitigate those risks, organizations can have the best of both worlds.

Devices left unmanaged
Mobility is the ultimate productivity tool – it’s the freedom to connect and collaborate wherever and however you want on the devices that align best with your work habits.

Yet as prominent as enterprise mobility has become over the last few years, many CIOs and other decision-makers have overlooked the widening gaps in cybersecurity that are inherent to the use of smartphones and tablets in the workplace. One study performed by software makers Code42 revealed that even though nearly half of all enterprise data can be accessed via mobile devices, two-thirds of polled mobile end users said their organizations lack fully regimented BYOD policies.

Scarier still, CSO Online reported half of all businesses have at least one device with capable of jeopardizing their whole operation. Without strict enterprise mobility management, businesses’ most sensitive data could leak from all its smartphones and tablets like water through the holes in a colander. Millions of personal and enterprise mobile devices are stolen every year, according to the Consumer Reports National Research Center, and the keys to a company’s data caches could go with them if decision-makers don’t plan effectively.

Thankfully, these numbers are declining thanks to security initiatives taken by hardware providers, software developers and businesses putting their own mechanisms in place to thwart cybercrime. To prevent data theft, CIOs should enforce both physical and virtual authentication for all mobile end users. These measures and more enhance security while avoiding compromised output from staff.

Malicious mobile apps
Downloading the latest, greatest mobile application can keep workers’ inboxes tidy, communications flowing and your business succeeding. But how do you know the app you just snagged from the app store isn’t a digital wolf in sheep’s clothing?

Yes, all businesses must defend their data against malicious mobile apps lousy with malware trolling app stores as the real deal. These invaders can inject bad code into enterprise configurations, steal data and even control embedded microphones or cameras. So, how can decision-makers protect their data and their employees’ tech without stifling the use of apps aimed at improving productivity?

For starters, mobile device management solutions allow for oversight of devices – personal and corporately owned – across the entire network. These tools help managers approve verified applications for download and restrict access to unapproved apps, effectively preventing mobile threats in the form of malicious apps. Being safe won’t slow you down, so long as you and your employees approach information security with intelligence and the latest mobile management procedures designed to ward off malware and wall off enterprise data from cybercriminals.

Security is just one part of a larger enterprise mobility puzzle. To get help with the rest, check out our white paper “Five Tips for Mastering Enterprise Mobility.”

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