Most companies see the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) trend, where employees use their personal mobile devices for work purposes, as a growing threat to business. Despite this, the percentage of companies taking measures to minimise this threat is relatively small, according to recent Kaspersky Lab research, which took place in 24 countries.
Respondents in Japan expressed the most concern about this growing trend and its associated threats - 93 per cent agreed that BYOD is a threat to their businesses. Companies in North America (69 per cent) also voiced a high level of concern, as did those in the Middle East (65 per cent) and Western Europe (62 per cent). Russian companies were the least concerned, with 57 per cent of participants acknowledging any threat posed by a BYOD policy.
The research revealed that most companies do not plan to introduce any prohibitive measures against the use of personal devices at the workplace. On the contrary, about 31 per cent of respondents said they plan to encourage the use of personal smartphones and tablets at work, while another 34 per cent said they did not believe that prohibitive measures would prevent employees from using their own devices.
The percentage of companies planning to restrict the use of personal devices for work purposes is on the rise - the number of respondents looking to impose restrictions was up by six per cent from 19 per cent in 2012 to 25 per cent in 2013. The percentage of companies planning to impose more stringent restrictions against the use of personal devices at work is unchanged from last year, at 10 per cent.
It’s easy to see why there are growing business concerns about threats posed by mobile devices. The survey also shows that the improper use of these devices is a frequent cause of IT security incidents, resulting in the loss of critical company data. Nearly 18 per cent (two per cent more than in 2012) of respondents said their companies had suffered confidential data leaks through mobile email clients, text messaging, and other channels available to smartphone and tablet owners.
But comparatively, few companies are adopting specialised software products to protect themselves against such threats. Around 40 per cent of companies are using antivirus solutions to integrate, protect and manage mobile devices on the corporate network, and only 24 per cent (two per cent fewer than in 2012) use Mobile Device Management solutions.
The importance of mobile security and management
As BYOD becomes more commonplace and the number of incidents involving mobile devices grows, ensuring the centralised management of these devices and keeping them secure has become a necessity. It is equally important that the solutions performing these functions are easy to use, easy to manage, and easy to integrate into the corporate network.
Kaspersky Security for Mobile is available either as a targeted solution or as a component of Kaspersky Endpoint Security for Business. A mobile agent is installed at device level to provide advanced protection against anti-malware threats, while Mobile Device Management (MDM) makes the secure configuration of mobile devices painless and straightforward. Corporate data can be isolated and encrypted in a container on the personal device, and thanks to Remote Find, Lock and Wipe, this data can be deleted if the device is lost or stolen. A single unified administrative console means that all corporate endpoints, including BYOD mobile devices, can managed together in one integrated security platform.
About Kaspersky Lab
Kaspersky Lab is the world’s largest privately held vendor of endpoint protection solutions. The company is ranked among the world’s top four vendors of security solutions for endpoint users*. Throughout its more than 16-year history Kaspersky Lab has remained an innovator in IT security and provides effective digital security solutions for large enterprises, SMBs and consumers. Kaspersky Lab, with its holding company registered in the United Kingdom, currently operates in almost 200 countries and territories across the globe, providing protection for over 300 million users worldwide. Learn more at www.kaspersky.co.uk
* The company was rated fourth in the IDC rating Worldwide Endpoint Security Revenue by Vendor, 2012. The rating was published in the IDC report "Worldwide Endpoint Security 2013–2017 Forecast and 2012 Vendor Shares (IDC #242618, August 2013). The report ranked software vendors according to earnings from sales of endpoint security solutions in 2012.