Cybersecurity Solutions to Elevate Your BYOD Policy

UPDATED: February 5, 2024

Cybersecurity, in addition to technical solutions, is critical to the success of your business’s BYOD policy. Your network is a resource, and your employees should be able to leverage it based on a mutual exchange of trust and regulation. The bottom line, if you're not staying on top of your BYOD policy, your data is at risk. Lets talk about why and how to fix it. 

2023 was the year for increased breaches. Between Business Email Compromise and AI driven attacks specifically targeting Texas/Oklahoma small businesses (especially ERs), last year reminded us that something as simple as a patch or a policy can make your infrastructure immediately more secure. 

Patching and updating your IT software and hardware is critical. Many SMBs (small and medium businesses) think that hackers only go after large corporations since those stories typically make the news headlines. But actually, small business are targeted almost half the time and a single breach can cost an average of $1 million dollars. Cyber criminals realize that smaller companies oftentimes do not have the resources needed to protect them from breaches.

This includes a BYOD policy. With so many people working from home still, their entry points are prime targets for hackers. Think about it: they decline your issued hardware, use their own device, and anything they search on that endpoint becomes a part of your system (especially when they connect to your data via login credentials). One employee searching something phishy on their device at home and a hacker has access to your entire system. 

How to increase Security in your BYOD Policies

Assess the Risks for BYOD

Allowing employees to do work tasks on their own devices can bring great benefits, but it also can bring risks to the company.

  • Security breaches from lost devices.
  • Employees working on unsecured networks.
  • Lack of technical support.
  • Mixing personal and private functions on the same device.
  • Loss of control over company data.
  • Malware.

Utilize an Acceptable Use Policy 

If your employees use your business’s technology assets, your business should already have an Acceptable Use Policy in place. This is an agreed upon document that lists what you can do with your device while you have access to company information. Include your BYOD policy as part of the business’s Acceptable Use Policy for two main reasons:

  1. Employees have to sign an acknowledgement and receipt of the Acceptable Use Policy.
  2. The Acceptable Use Policy is easily obtained and displayed per business protocol.

Keep Software and Applications Updated 

It’s easy to ignore those pesky popups that say “a software update is available” and think I’ll just finish what I’m working on and install the update later, but the truth is most people won’t. Software updates, however, often include critical patches to security holes that hackers use to infect your systems and steal valuable data. By ignoring those messages, you are leaving your computer and network open, allowing cybercriminals to cause major damage.

  • Software updates need to be checked and performed at least once a month for:
    • Operating Systems (i.e. Windows, Mac OS)
    • Productivity Software (i.e. Microsoft Office)
    • Accounting and Customer Management Software (i.e. Quickbooks, Sage, Salesforce)
    • Custom Applications (such as legacy software that was custom written for your organization)
    • Industry-Specific Software
    • Web Browsers (i.e. Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, Safari)
    • Plugins (i.e. Adobe Flash, Java, Microsoft Silverlight)
    • Website Content Management Systems and Plugins (i.e. WordPress, Joomla, Magneto and Drupal)

There are several patch management software that help organizations discover vulnerabilities and stay on top of updates. If you need further assistance, give us a call! Secure Managed IT Services from Centre Technologies includes automated patching. Monthly and quarterly audits help find vulnerabilities within your network so they can be addressed before a data breach occurs. Our local cybersecurity professionals and global network are constantly looking out for the latest threats and solutions to protect our customers. We work with you on budgeting to replace aging equipment which decreases the chance of hackers exploiting unpatched and out-of-date hardware. All of these components together drastically decrease your risk of becoming the next victim of a cyber attack.

Don't Forget Your Other Hardware! 

Not only is it imperative to apply software updates to your PCs, laptops and servers, but also other IT hardware devices, such as switches, firewalls, routers and access points like printers. Once equipment is deemed end-of-life (EOL), the manufacturers no longer support or maintain them, which can lead to security risks. That is why we recommend for companies to budget replacing IT equipment before they reach their end-of-life.

How to Launch Your BYOD Policy

After assessing the risks and benefits of a BYOD solution, your company will need the help of mobile device management vendor to implement the plan. Contact Texas and Louisiana’s fastest growing IT solutions company to get started with your BYOD solution today. It's that easy! 

Originally published on August 6, 2014

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About the Author

Emily Kirk Emily Kirk

Creative content writer and producer for Centre Technologies. I joined Centre after 5 years in Education where I fostered my great love for making learning easier for everyone. While my background may not be in IT, I am driven to engage with others and build lasting relationships on multiple fronts. My greatest passions are helping and showing others that with commitment and a little spark, you can understand foundational concepts and grasp complex ideas no matter their application (because I get to do it every day!). I am a lifelong learner with a genuine zeal to educate, inspire, and motivate all I engage with. I value transparency and community so lean in with me—it’s a good day to start learning something new! Learn more about Emily Kirk »

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