Achieving a balance between productivity and data security
Mobile technology has evolved very rapidly in recent years. As a technical consultant, I monitored developments very closely and translated them into practical solutions. To ensure that your organization can safely benefit from mobile access to business data and systems, today’s four key mobility trends are listed below. In addition, I discuss what you can do to reduce the risks.
By Robin Hobo, Consultant Mobility
Reading time: 4 minutes
1. New Europeas legislation (GDPR)
There is always a tension between mobility and data security. On the one hand, you want your organization’s employees to be able to work at any time and from any location. On the other, you do not want confidential data to become generally available. This is certainly true with respect to customer or client data, not least because, if you retain such data, you are responsible for adequate security.
In the Netherlands, the legal framework regarding security is currently defined by the Personal Data Protection Act and the Data Leaks (Reporting Obligation) Act. Within the European Union, the rules set forth in these Acts will in the near future be replaced by the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). As of May 25, 2018, organizations will be required to prove that they have a policy in place that was formulated and adopted specifically for the purpose of preventing data leaks.
Hefty fines and damage to image
The policy referred to will not be discretionary. A failure to comply with the policy may result in the imposition of fines up to a maximum of EUR 20 million or 4% of global sales. Data breaches must be reported within 72 hours. If a data breach is not reported within this period and a data leak occurs, the general public will become aware of the leak through different channels. The image of the organization concerned could be heavily damaged as a result. It is therefore time to take appropriate action, and doing so does not have to be complicated.
It is easy to secure data on smartphones and tablets. Consider email, for example. By offering email on mobile devices through a managed app, a password or PIN code must be used to access the service. A managed app therefore constitutes a first security measure aimed at preventing the leaking of business data. It goes without saying that such a measure is important in terms of avoiding fines and, above all, properly protecting business data.
2. Inclusion of laptops in mobility policies
Traditionally, the “world” of laptops was always strictly separated from that of smartphones and tablets. Although they are of course mobile, laptops are often managed like desktops. The emergence of 2-in-1 laptops and netbooks is blurring the dividing line. An increasing number of organizations are including the management of these devices in their mobility policies. Using an Enterprise Mobility Management solution to manage these mobile devices increases the flexibility of employees without reducing the level of security. Data are always sent in encrypted form and private and business data are logically separated, for example, regardless of whether such data are on a laptop or a smartphone.
3. Use of mobile apps to reduce the management burden
Your employees already use many apps in their private lives. It is therefore hardly surprising that they also wish to use apps at work. Many organizations meet this need by adopting a Choose Your Own Device (CYOD) or Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy. But how do you maintain adequate control with respect to all those devices and the business data for which you are responsible? Apps make it relatively easy to ensure the security of data and systems. Mobile Application Management (MAM) makes it possible for employees to download an app from your organization’s own app store and safely use the app. This solution significantly reduces the management burden because your organization only manages the app, not the device. The solution therefore enables employees to be productive with their own devices while ensuring adequate security and privacy.
4. Secure business apps
Apps are no longer designed solely for the private consumer market. Developers have also discovered the business market. A good example in this regard is the iBabs meeting app, a secure version of which is now available in combination with Microsoft Intune, Citrix XenMobile, BlackBerry Dynamics, and VMware AirWatch, for example. The advantage is that this additional functionality is securely available within an organization’s own environment. Employees therefore directly benefit from new productivity tools without additional security risks.
The right balance
It is abundantly clear that a great deal is taking place regarding professional mobility, and rightly so. If employees can access business data and systems at any time and from any location, they can be productive regardless of where they are. At the same time, you understandably want to be sure that employees are communicating in a secure manner and that unauthorized parties cannot gain access to data.
Security is usually adequate when it comes to workstations within an organization. It is vital that you also ensure security in relation to your organization’s mobile functionalities in order to increase productivity, avoid fines, and prevent damage to your organization’s image.
The benefits of Enterprise Mobility Management
I would be happy to hold an inspiration session at your business location or at our office in Amsterdam to discuss the most recent developments with you. We would of course also be happy to assist your organization by carrying out our Enterprise Mobility Assessment. Based on the specific requirements and wishes of your organization and its employees, we develop a practical strategy and a concrete business plan. This process remains transparent at all times and provides the certainty that your organization is getting the most from mobility solutions.
Please do not hesitate to schedule an appointment or contact Robin Hobo.
About Robin Hobo
Robin Hobo is the latest member of the Solution Advising team at COMPAREX The Netherlands team for mobility. Many years ago, Robin was one of the first specialists who started combining mobility and the overall demand from IT. He has turned his passion for technology into his work. Over the last four years, he focused on the technical side of mobility, implementing Enterprise Mobility Management solutions from different manufacturers. With his knowledge and experience, he is perfectly able to translate the functional requirements of customers into practical solutions.
In an inspiration session, Robin analyses the customer needs around mobility from before processing this information into a tailor made advice. While doing so, he takes into account your wishes, requirements and obligations, converting them into solutions that increase the productivity of your employees and maximize opportunities for your organization.