Blog & Company News

Dec 12, 2012

33 Percent of Companies at Risk from BYOD

As tablets and smartphones become increasingly more popular, companies should be aware of the adverse effects the smart devices can have on their organization’s network. According to a recent survey, one in three organizations is putting themselves at risks by allowing employees unrestricted access to corporate resources from their personal smart devices. The research was conducted by B2B International on behalf of Kaspersky Lab, provider of endpoint protection solutions. The research revealed that although 38 percent of companies employ some type of regulation on smartphone use, only 11 percent actually use Mobile Device Management software to ensure compliance with corporate security policies. With smart device use on the rise, companies should be aware of the possible risks they take when allowing BYOD. According to ABIResearch, 1.2 billion smartphones will enter the market over the next five years, as reported earlier by Forbes. In addition, according to Digital Ad Agency Vertic, enterprise tablet adoption will grow by almost 50 percent per year and app development projects will outnumber native PC projects by 2015. While statistics reveal a massive growth in smartphone and tablets, less than 10 percent of organizations are “fully aware” of the devices accessing their network, as reported by Forbes. Nevertheless, Forbes reports that 74 percent of companies allow some sort of BYOD usage regardless. I’d say the cherry on top of this sundae, however, is that according to Kaspersky’s research, 34 percent of those surveyed think smart devices present a significant threat to their business even though they allow BYOD and are currently placing no restrictions on employees’ use. According to Kaspersky Lab, even though companies are aware of the evident risks they face by allowing BYOD, only 9 percent say they are planning to introduce a strict ban on employees’ usage in the future. Kaspersky states that this could be because of the IT specialist surveyed, 36 percent believe that the number of user devices in the workplace will only increase. Seems IT is waiting to see what comes of this beast that is smart devices before creating rules and regulations for employees. However, with more than half of those surveyed admitting cybercrime is the second biggest threat to business. One would think IT would create restrictions now and simply adjust them as time continues. After all, Kaspersky notes that within the last year these issues have increased because of BYOD. Additionally, 10 percent of respondents said they had experienced critical information leaks due to the loss or theft of a mobile device, and 11 percent believe an attack on their company will happen sooner or later. “BYOD is a tricky subject for organizations. Allowing employees the opportunity to use their own devices in the workplace can lead to enhanced productivity and creativity, but can also bring increased risk. Rather than applying a blanket ban on the use of personal devices, businesses should look to manage and secure the use of these devices, enabling them to reap the benefits of BYOD without the security worry,” said Senior Security Researcher at Kaspersky Lab David Emm in a company statement. During this research, more than 3,300 senior IT professionals from 22 countries were surveyed and all had an influence on IT security policy.