The use of mobile devices across industries and enterprises is growing. Unfortunately, this growth also means an increase in potential security threats. Businesses looking to purchase mobile technology rank preventing data breaches as a top three investment concern, according to a VDC Research study*. Having security policies for handling lost or stolen devices and data is ranked fifth. To address these concerns, IT departments need to be diligent in setting up security to protect the company's investment and sensitive data. The security provides protection from specific events, but also provides assurance so your business can operate normally without risk of security breaches. Being proactive, rather than reactive about IT security will safeguard your mobile device investment, increasing productivity while minimizing the risk to your bottom line.
The following are six of the best practices for protecting your investment and business:
1. Use Secure Wi-Fi Connections
Connecting to public Wi-Fi is one of the easiest ways for cybercriminals to intercept sensitive data and information. If devices are used outside of the office, use a VPN connected to your company's network or a data plan.
2. Install Anti-Malware and Anti-Virus Software
Malware is malicious code designed to specifically target mobile devices, with the goal of accessing stored and transmitted data. Install a protective system and run it regularly to ensure your devices are safe. Some security apps can even scan, detect, and remove malware automatically.
3. Deploy Data Encryption
Highly sensitive data can be encrypted before storing or sharing, meaning only those with the code or password can access it,theregy protecting it from being intercepted.
4. Have Visibility of All Devices
Companies that allow employees to bring their devices home or leave them unattended are at risk of the device being lost or stolen. Using a mobile device management system, you can immediately locate a device, lock it, and wipe it of all data. These include Find My iPhone, AndroidLost, and Microsoft Exchange.
5. Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)
MFA is a security system that verifies a user's identity by requiring multiple credentials. When logging in to a device, the user will be prompted to give an additional form of identification, such as a code sent to their cell phone. This will prevent data breaches due to stolen company credentials.
6. Educate Employees
Make sure all employees are aware of the potential security risks and threats and create clear expectations and guidelines. Specifically, make sure employees are aware of the risks of downloading and using an unauthorized app, and signs of spam or phishing attempts.
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*"Total Cost of Ownership Models - Enterprise and Government Mobility Applications", VDC Research, Josh Martin, David Krebs