Over half of American adults own a smartphone according to Gallup. Across the globe, it is estimated that by the end of 2015, 2 billion smart phones will be in use. That doesn’t include tablets, which IDC reports almost 230 Million will be sold this year.
All of these devices are designed to make our life easier, but they pose an emerging risk to your business. Some of these concerns are privacy, security, and - if a device is lost or stolen - a disgruntled employee.
Bring Your Own Device Policies
The good news is that there is a simple solution. A Bring Your Own Device policy (BYOD) will help protect your company. “Bring Your Own Device” refers to the practice of allowing employees to use their own personal devices - usually smartphones, tablets or laptops - at and for work. Each policy can be customized to your workforce, however there are a few key requirements we like to see:
- Clearly state which devices are allowed under the BYOD policy.
- Specify who owns what on the device; if your company retains the right to wipe the entire device, provide guidelines for how employees can back up personal data such as photos and contact lists.
- Outline what information technology (IT) support will be provided to the employee.
- Stipulate which apps are allowed and forbidden and determine how this will be enforced.
- Set strict security procedures that include complex passwords in order to access the device.
- Describe the process for removing company information from a device owned by an employee who is leaving the organization.
- Integrate your current acceptable use policy into the BYOD policy.
Even with a good BYOD policy, your company still faces several risks. These include:
- A lost or stolen device
- Cloud storage
- Unethical employees
- Ex employees
Protecting Personal and Corporate Information
Consult with your legal and IT departments as to the feasibility of putting a BYOD policy in place and make sure each of the above risks is being reviewed annually. In addition, because technology changes so frequently, it is important to make sure both your BYOD policy and your commercial insurance policy reflect these changes.
Want to learn more about BYOD policies? Download our whitepaper or call our office today so we can help you design your own.