BYOD programs almost always problematic, security managers warn

It's no secret that IT managers are concerned about the security implications of mobile devices, but a new Check Point Software Technologies survey has confirmed just how bad the problem has become as the majority of local respondents say rapidly-increasing numbers of mobile devices pose a significant jump in security issues.

Fully 81 percent of the Australian and New Zealander respondents in the global survey expect that the number of mobile security incidents will increase this year, with 98 percent expressing concerns about the impact of a mobile security incident.

Bring your own device (BYOD) projects had created new challenges, with 57 percent managing business data on employee-owned personal devices and 94 percent of saying that the BYOD model had introduced security challenges.

Among those challenges were securing corporate information (66 percent); managing personal devices containing both personal and corporate data (59 percent); tracking and controlling access to corporate and private networks (57 percent); finding agnostic security solutions (46 percent); and keeping device operating system and applications updated (36 percent).

“Mobile device cause ongoing concern for IT teams responsible for information security,” the study's authors concluded.

“Sensitive corporate information is easily transported outside of managed environments, while the BYOD movement has dramatically increased the number of expensive security incidents. Highly publicized hacks have significant financial impact as well as risk to a company's reputation.”

The Android mobile platform was singled out for its security issues, with 73 percent of respondents naming the platform as the most problematic in their organisations. Concerns about the types of incidents ranged from lost or stolen information (71 percent) to the introduction of security weaknesses for future attacks (64 percent), compliance violations and fines (39 percent), and the cost of replacing lost or stolen devices (18 percent).

The survey involved 100 Australasian security managers who participated in a Dimensional Research survey that encompassed 706 respondents worldwide. Check Point recently launched its Check Point Capsule as a way of securely encapsulating data and applications on mobile devices.

This article is brought to you by Enex TestLab, content directors for CSO Australia.

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