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Monday, April 01, 2013

Indian firms embracing BYOD but face cybersecurity risks

Category:   Enterprise Mobility

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The rise of the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trend is growing in popularity around the world. Firms of all sizes, industries and geographic locations are increasingly coming to realize the potential benefits of deploying such strategies. Fearful of being left behind by more agile competitors, these organizations are moving quickly to allow employees to use their personal smartphones and tablets for work-related purposes.

Indian businesses are no exception. As a recent study highlighted, Indian firms are demonstrating notable enthusiasm for BYOD policies. However, the report also found that secure file transfer solutions are lacking, potentially putting these companies at risk of data breaches, exposure and cyber?-crime.

BYOD in India
The report, conducted by Symantec, surveyed 200 Indian companies and found that approximately 70 percent of participants believe that the benefits of BYOD deployments are equal to or greater than the risks posed by such strategies.

The study further indicated that these organizations are not taking sufficient steps to minimize the risks they face when leveraging BYOD strategies. Shantanu Ghosh, a Symantec employee who shared details of the study, reported that only half of participating firms have taken steps to ensure that employees abide by BYOD security policies. Additionally, fewer than half of responding firms said they have worked to guarantee that mobile devices connected to the corporate network feature sufficient safeguards.

Additionally, Ghosh pointed out that 72 percent of Indian firms surveyed indicated they had experienced mobile security incidents, including problems such as malware infection, spam and data breaches.

These incidents can have serious consequences. As numerous industry experts have noted, people are generally becoming much more aware of the importance of ensuring their personal information remains secure for fear of becoming victims of identity theft and fraud. Consequently, firms that experience data breaches will likely lose business as consumers avoid patronizing such organizations.

Protected BYOD
To take advantage of BYOD's benefits without compromising security, businesses in India and abroad must invest in secure file sharing solutions tailored for BYOD environments. Specifically, firms must pursue tools that can be easily implemented and integrated by users without posing a significant use burden. By deploying tools that operate in the background and do not require time-consuming action by employees, firms can greatly improve the overall quality of their BYOD arrangements.