Have you harnessed the strategic advantages offered by mobile technology? Mobile devices have made it easier and easier to get work done while on the go. Laptops, tablets, and smartphones are a simple way to share and review documents, stay in touch with employees, and more while on the road. Mobility has delivered a number of advantages to organizations that are willing to embrace new technology, including: cost-effect, convenience & user experience, and productivity. It's no surprise that mobile devices are continuing to become a central and necessary part of the business world. What might be surprising is how unprepared some businesses are for that reality. Besides the new tech and what to expect, cyber security for mobile is going to be huge in 2020.
The Need For Mobile Security In 2020
No matter what kind of cybersecurity you have in place at the office, it won’t extend to the mobile devices that have access to your personal information. This is a critical limitation of your cybersecurity software, and it’s obvious when you think about it – if your firewall is only installed on your work devices, but you let employees use personal devices and home workstations to access business data, then obviously you won’t be totally secure. You'll be left open to critical vulnerabilities and cyber attacks that will only be more common in the coming years:
• Lost or stolen devices can do major damage to you, leading to compromised data and lost work.
• Unsecured Wi-Fi hotspots and other vulnerabilities allow intruders inside your private network.
• Mobile devices are becoming bigger targets for cyber criminals, who use malware and other methods to attack smartphones and tablets.
Are There Apps To Help Keep You Secure?
There sure are! Consider these apps to help keep you secure.
Virtual Private Network
One of the most proven techniques to make sure your data is safe is to use a virtual private network (VPN), which will give you back control over how you're identified online. A VPN creates a secure tunnel for your data to transit the Internet, using a network of private servers.
When you use a VPN, your data is encrypted, or hidden, as it moves from your device to the VPN and then continues onto the Internet through what’s called an exit node. A VPN creates the appearance that your data is coming from the VPN server, not from your device. That makes it harder for an attacker to identify you as the source of the data – no matter whether you’re on your mobile device’s data connection, or using an unsecured retail Wi-Fi network while you’re in line for coffee. Even if attackers can intercept your data, the encryption means the attackers can’t understand your data or use it to their advantage. When you put your data out to the VPN server, it exits back out to the public internet. If the site you’re visiting has HTTPS to keep the connection safe, you are still secure.
Multi-Factor Authentication is a great way to add an extra layer of protection to the existing system and account logins. 45% of polled businesses began using MFA in 2018, compared to 25% the year prior. By requiring a second piece of information like a randomly-generated numerical code sent by text message, you're better able to make sure that the person using your employee's login credentials is actually who they say they are. Biometrics like fingerprints, voice, or even iris scans are also options, as are physical objects like keycards.
Implement A Mobile Device Management Policy
This type of comprehensive policy dictates how your employees can use their personal devices for work purposes, dictating which security apps should be installed, and what best practices need to be followed.
An effective MDM policy should also instill safe and secure practices for employees that use personal devices for business purposes. Key considerations include:
- Decide when and how mobile devices will be used.
- Consider how mobile devices can pose risks to your data.
- Develop, document, and implement mobile device usage policies and procedures.
- Implement practices for controlling which apps are permitted for business use.
- Train your staff.
Your entire team should be taught how to secure their devices, how to protect business data, what the risks are, and how to avoid common security mistakes.
In 2020, and beyond, technology can be more than just a way to keep your business running, secure from cybercrime and backed up in the event of a disaster. Truly optimal IT (like Next I.T. ) should help you transform your business and your customers' businesses for the better – but that will only happen if you embrace new opportunities, like those offered by mobile technology.