Posted by Chris Dritsas / July 9th, 2014
NASA’s newly implemented BYOD policy has sparked a fire of debate in the corporate world regarding how mobile phone data should be handled in the workplace. NASA’s level of national security is much higher than that of most countries. The new policy shines light of the issue on employees bringing their personal devices to the office. NASA’s Enterprise Applications Service Executive, John Sprague, stated that under the new policy “There could be the possibility that a device will have to be destroyed depending on what was on it”.
Why such a seemingly harsh BYOD policy? Sprague further explains that the overwhelming number of employees who bring their own devices to work, despite agency policy, was the driving factor in the need to restructure their BYOD program. The question of what data might lead to the destruction of an employee’s personal mobile device is where the controversy arises.
How is this going to influence the rest of the business world? If text messages are important enough to be considered an issue of “national security”, businesses need to understand how important an effective BYOD solution will be for their company. Not every company out there needs a policy as strict as NASA’s. However, considering that 92% of employees report using their personal phones for work every week and 62% at least every day – it’s safe to say the vast majority need some policy in place (Cisco & partners). Corporate security sometimes is an important as national security. At least to stockholders!
The solution to this impending problem is easier than one might think. A recent study by Check Point Software Technologies Ltd. found that 93% of businesses are currently facing challenges in implementing a BYOD policy AND 67% find securing corporate information to be their greatest BYOD challenge. So, it’s safe to say that this issue isn’t “small potatoes” and should be regarded as critical. Employers need to educate their employees on mobile device security on the most basic of levels. A survey by Cisco & partners found that 39% of employees don’t password protect the mobile devices that they bring to work! In addition, the survey found that 86% of workers responded that their employers wouldn’t be able to remotely wipe their mobile device if it were lost or stolen. These findings make it clear how significant BYOD solutions have become.