Smartphones are becoming a common part of business environments. File sharing and productivity apps make it easy to use smartphones to enhance the work experience. Unfortunately, smartphones are prone to hacking, viruses and malware attempts. Employers must take precautions to protect their businesses if they allow employees to use smartphones.
Educate Employees Yourself
Don’t assume employees can learn everything they need to know about smartphone safety by reading the company’s smartphone safety policy. The majority of employees won’t read or understand the manual; it’s up to the employer to educate them.
The single best thing you can do to protect your company from attacks on employee smartphones is to regularly train employees on smartphone safety. Require employees to attend a meeting on smartphone safety at least once a month. At the meeting, review your current safety policy, introduce updates and changes and give employees the opportunity to ask questions. By being proactive, you stand the best chance of preventing hacking or other security risks to your employees’ smartphones.
Provide Employees With Smartphones
Rather than allowing employees to bring their own devices to work, issue smartphones specifically for work purposes. Although this may seem costly, in the long run it saves money by closing giant security loopholes. Company-issued smartphones are less prone to hacking or other cyber attacks because they are used only for work and at work; employees won’t be transferring files from personal devices that may not be secure.
Set up Remote Access
Set up remote access on your company’s smartphones for yourself. This allows you to access and modify data on the phone without accessing the phone itself. In other words, you can modify data from your computer or from a different mobile device.
Remote access is useful in the event a smartphone is lost or stolen. You can wipe sensitive data off the phone so thieves can’t access it.
Have an Emergency Plan in Place
It’s important to create a plan for if a phone is lost, stolen or hacked into. Train your employees on what to do if their smartphones are compromised. Have specific people on your team who are points of contact for dealing with this type of emergency.
Take Disciplinary Action if Necessary
Your smartphone policy should include the following elements:
- Safety precautions you expect employees to follow
- Contact points for dealing with security breaches
- Consequences for engaging in inappropriate behavior
Once your employees understand the rules, they must be held accountable for failure to follow them. You need to take your smartphone policy as seriously as any other policy; otherwise, employees will violate it and put your company at risk.
Smartphone technology can open a company up to data theft and serious problems if not dealt with appropriately. However, you don’t need to let that scare you away from using it in your business. If you put the proper protocols in place, you can safely and effectively use smartphone technology to increase your company’s productivity.
Sarah Hendricks who is a security expert on protecting users and businesses from hackers and data leakage with NQ Mobile app security. Users in the office, at home, or working remotely are all subject to attack, click here to learn where to find mobile security applications.