BYOD Security

So, articles abound that could confuse the layman concerning BYOD; those that give a thumbs up or thumbs down to the concepts. Will they favour the cost saving for the organisation or will they support employee’s freedom of choice and preference of device?

If you listen to some you would be forgiven for thinking that the organisation is just out to screw you. Are you being duped if you accept the positive aspects relating to allowing the individual to use their own preferred device?

It’s amusing to think of all the derivatives of BYOD – Bring Your Own: Device, Dollars, Desk, – and to extend it – Bring Your Own Cisco 3750 Switch stack!!
The truth about the way the world is going is that change will mean that different groups need different things and at different times.

Organisations will have to evolve policies. This won’t be easy or quick! Will the organisation pay or offer a contribution to the device, multiple devices, bills, software? Will they support only one OS or multiples? The list goes on.

Underlying all of this is the really important point. Security. We know that people work better when they have a device that works for them. We know that organisations are predisposed to opt for the cost the least cost route, all other things being equal. We know that IT Managers will want to keep things simple.

However, the world isn’t simple, all things are not equal and there will be varying degrees of user need in many different areas. But, Security matters to different degree to different groups and for different reasons.

There is, therefore, a need to have a security policy first and foremost as this will drive or limit many other requirements. The point of BYOD is that it is YOUR device and it is NOT locked down. This would defeat the purpose!

So, a solution is needed that allows for secure access from any place. It needs to support wireless access to allow freedom. It needs to provide a secure portal to allow access under controlled conditions. It needs to be, in and of itself, secure; intrinsically secure.

So, much as it will irk many who have to operate under secure conditions, there may be no answer to their desire to operate under a BYOD policy because the policy will dictate the status quo with fully locked down platforms, secure access methods, frequent password changes and machines that, let’s face it, are likely to be old and cheap. So, is that it then?

No! We all carry a phone and a number of other gadgets. Some use a MiFi or a dongle. So, we are, to some degree, accepting of the need for small devices in addition to our laptops, Macs, iPads and tablets. What if we accepted that we had to carry an intermediate device that was small, discrete, AND provided the inherent security that the organisation needs in order to KNOW that its security was guaranteed.

Secure hardware, encrypted storage and cache, approved and managed OS all of which carried the organisations stamp of approval and was bought by the organisation. No need to do anything on YOUR device other than loading an app.

Everyone wins! Security is maintained, IT gets to manage a single, simple set of products, and the individual gets to use their own device! So, all we need now is the device …

Impleo is working with its partners to make this a reality. Check back periodically to check on progress!