Guest Column | June 3, 2014

How To Take A Data-Centric View Of BYOD Security

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By Ryan Kalember, chief product officer, WatchDox

BYOD (bring your own device) requires different ways of addressing data security. Ryan Kalember of WatchDox gives advice — and some warnings — about BYOD policies and potential vulnerabilities

Q: In your opinion, what is the biggest threat to data security when an organization has a BYOD program?

One of the biggest security threats is loss of control over files or content. No firm, whether it is a mom-and-pop retail store or the largest entertainment studio, wants its sensitive data leaked to the wrong party. The risk of file breaches — whether inadvertent or deliberate — should be dealt with proactively by IT departments.  

Many companies believe that by implementing mobile device security, the risk of data loss is diminished. However, that only works if IT has control over each end point. What if an employee decides to download a file on his personal phone to view over the weekend or while on vacation?  He can easily thwart the security policy and actions of the IT department or service provider. Rather than being concerned about securing the individual device, IT should look at the problem from a data-centric view and protect files while they are at rest and in transit. Then, regardless of who accesses the content and on which device, the security is in place to prevent a data breach.

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