Gone are the times, when employees only had their phone numbers and contact names as the most sensitive information that they carry on their phones. Nowadays, as a result of the advent of smartphones, employees can use mobile devices to gain access to crucial aspects of a business. This will include emails and passwords of a company’s data and secrets.
Importance Of Mobile Security
With the advent of 5G, more and more businesses are expected to adopt mobile technology. Therefore, depending on the circumstances surrounding how your business utilizes mobile devices, poor security policies and features can lead to disruptions in your IT infrastructure. This is why it’s important that businesses implement effective cyber security safeguards to protect themselves from mobile-related security threats. Let’s take a how companies can become more proactive at protecting mobile devices.
1) Mobile Device Acceptable Use Policy
One of the most effective things that you can do as a business owner, is to develop a device usage policy. This is best done prior to providing your employees with tablets or smartphones. This policy should consist of clear rules which outline examples of acceptable use. Additionally, employees should be aware of the actions which will follow, in the event that they break the policy. The security policy can also help employees to understand the numerous risks businesses face as a result of mobile devices as well as steps they can take to reduce those risks. Most cyber security experts agree that a well informed employee is a company’s first line of defense against cyber threats.
2) Mobile Device Management Software
Arguably the number one thing you can do when it comes to protecting mobile devices is to invest in a mobile device management software. This is software that’s used by IT technicians to improve data security on mobile devices.
3) Operating System And Antivirus Updates
Operating system updates usually consist of patches for security vulnerabilities. These will provide devious actors with the opportunity to infect a device with malware. Therefore, staff members should be encouraged to constantly update their device, as soon as an update is available. In regards to antivirus software, it may be true that there are several free options that can be utilized. But, apps which charge a monthly or annual fee, often come with reliable support.
4) Data Backup
Similarly to how you would backup data on your laptop, the data on company mobile devices should be backed up as well. In the event that a device becomes stolen, lost or damaged beyond repair, it will give you peace of mind to know that critical data can be restored.
5) Password Policy
In addition to creating an acceptable use policy, a password policy should be created as well. Statistics indicate that even though a typical email address is linked to over 130 accounts, people tend to use a handful of passwords to protect all their accounts. This in itself is a security risk, because hackers are well aware of this. If a hacker learns the password of one account, they could then gain access to several dozen more, including accounts related to your business. Therefore, business owners should establish a password policy which stipulates things such as:
- Change device login password every 3 months.
- Encourage the use of two-factor authentication.
- Passwords should be no less than 8 characters and include special characters, numbers and upper/lowercase letters.
- Do not follow a simple sequence such as “abc” or “123” in your password.
- Passwords should not be based on the name of a spouse, child or pet. Information like this can be easily sourced from social media.
6) Data Leakage
Data leakage can be best described as unauthorized access to company data. This can occur intentionally or accidentally. In general, mobile related data leaks occur as a result of a mobile app. Mobile apps typically ask for broad permission like a mobile device’s camera, files, contacts and location. Therefore, all mobile devices that are used for work, should be registered to the company’s mobile device management solution. This will give you the ability to monitor, manage or secure all company mobile devices. It can help to ensure that newly installed apps do not get permission to access sensitive data such as location.
Technician at Computer PRO Unltd, father of one, gamer.