BYOD Risks & Rewards

How to keep employee smartphones, laptops
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What BYOD means for business

Today’s IT leaders face many security challenges and rapid changes, all while having to do more with less. They must provide end users with the latest, most advanced technologies to remain competitive. And they have to protect company, customer and employee data while thwarting attacks from cybercriminals.

New technology brings more ways to access data, new types of devices and alternatives to the traditional PC platform. Apple CEO Tim Cook appropriately called this the “post-PC era.”

These dynamics have created a shift toward BYOD, a trend in the workplace that’s rapidly becoming the rule rather than the exception.

BYOD encompasses more than personal computers. It means employees using smartphones, tablets, BlackBerrys, ultralight books and more for their work. The concept of BYOD broadens to include software and services, as employees use cloud services and other tools on the web.

The shortcomings of technology which made BYOD unrealistic a few years ago have given way to broad popularity and use of these tools.

These include:

  1. Web: Today’s web is the singular way to access any application—business, financial, customer support, sales or technology.
  2. Wireless: No matter where you are or what device you’re using, you have access to the back office infrastructure through extensive Wi-Fi networks.
  3. Mobile devices: Device form factors have become more sophisticated, cheaper and more portable, with more robust memory and battery life.

Implemented properly, a BYOD program can reduce cost while increasing productivity and revenue. As BYOD goes mainstream in IT departments, security should be front and center for users and IT administrators alike.

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