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The Two Sides of BYOD

The Two Sides of BYOD

by MaaS360 staff | April 20, 2012

Image source: http://mrspal.org/files/2012/03/grassgreener-13pr4gl.jpg

Bring Your Own Device

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) programs have generated a lot of buzz and excitement. But who is more excited? The IT administrator, tasked with managing an influx of new devices? Or workers who’ve been permitted to use their once leisure-only smartphones and tablets for work purposes? Right now, no matter which side of the fence you stand on, the grass is looking greener on the other side.

IT's Aspirations: Security and Protection

Mobile workers may experience an uptick in productivity by using their preferred device at the office, but this is not the area of concern. At present, IT lacks a much sought confidence that end-users will live up to their expectations. The administrator is losing sleep over more pressing issues. Tossing and turning in the night, they ponder worst case scenarios pertaining to passcode protection. And applications... Do any of them pose security risk to the corporate network (and confidential data contained therein)? What if they aren't connected to the corporate network via WiFi? Does that mean they are eating up our company data plan? These concerns are just the tip of the iceburg. As more phones and tablets are released to consumers, the issue increases in degree of complication.

IT's number one priority: set clear cut rules via policy that can in turn be plugged in and enforced through a mobile device management (MDM) solution. A cloud-based solution such as MaaS360 makes it possible to view all of your devices on one screen, and push policy to the entire device inventory in seconds instead of minutes. Fear not the next big tablet from Apple, or phablet from Samsung. MaaS360 covers all of your bases; meeting your iOS device management, Android management, Windows Phone management, and BlackBerry management needs.

End-users Seek Privacy of Personal Information

Now if we peer over the other side of the fence, we will find the IT admin's colleagues; the end-users of devices brought from home. This group is just as concerned about privacy and security. It does not necessarily involve the greater whole; moreso themselves. No matter which platform they are running on, they have an app store with hundreds of thousands of applications to choose from. They probably have a camera on their device, and have many pictures stored on their phone that they'd like to keep personal. Though they've been provided a corporate email address, they use a personal handle to communicate with friends and family.

Once the decision has been made to use a dual-purpose device (work and home), the files and conversations aren't going anywhere. By connecting to the corporate network and/or enrolling in a mobile device management (MDM) service, users fear their files and conversations will attract interest from unwanted eyes.

Opportunely, MaaS360 makes it possible to block the viewing of Personally Identifiable Information (PII) on smartphones and tablets. By working this schema into corporate-use policy & enabling this feature, the admin will have no knowledge of apps on the device other than those that appear in the corporate app catalog. Further, no location information will be surrendered. Physical address, geographical coordinates, IP address and SSID will all be kept private to the user.

Finding Common Ground

Perhaps the combination of MDM and protection of PII is all your organization needs to get its BYOD program up and running. What do you think? Weigh in below in the comments, no matter what side of the fence you stand on.

Are you looking to find a balance between IT and end-users at your organization? Join us for next week's webinar BYOD: Striking a Balance—Employee Privacy and IT Governance and learn best practices from expert in mobility, Chris Hazelton of 451 Research.

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