5 ways to ensure BYOD security with network security

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With the influx of millennials and the increasing demand for flexible workplaces, there is a transition from using corporate devices to staff bringing their own devices. This has a significant impact on how IT can handle data security. For network security, companies must use BYOD in the workplace to implement specific security measures to protect valuable and sensitive company data.

What is BYOD?

Bring Your Own Device, the acronym for BYOD, is used by an organization that enables employees to use their own devices such as cell phones or laptops for official work. Employees have used their personal devices in the workplace for personal affairs, and the advent of BYOD now allows them to use their own devices for work.

This helps increase employee productivity, improve employee engagement in the company, and reduce IT operating costs. However, this can create a massive network security risk as a company is vulnerable to cyber threats.

Why do companies prefer BYOD?

BYOD provides employees and business owners with a simple and easy-to-manage solution for their network devices. Some of the importance of BYOD are given below.

  • It helps to increase employee productivity.
  • It helps save money.
  • It offers quick responses from employees.

Why is BYOD security important?

Organizations need to deal with BYOD security because personal devices are likely to enter a workplace whether or not IT is approved. In addition, BYOD solutions help improve employee morale and productivity. However, if BYOD security is not addressed by IT, access by personal devices to an organization’s network can create serious security challenges.

According to a recent report, the new remote working environment has encouraged companies to embrace a BYOD culture. 69% of organizations allow their employees to use personal devices to perform corporate tasks. However, this increase has also led to many security incidents: 63% of respondents encountered data breaches, 53% unauthorized access to data and systems, and 52% malware infections.

What are the increasing security issues with BYOD?

Some of the major BYOD vulnerabilities for hybrid network security are listed below.

1. Third party network errors

Employees typically connect their devices to various types of networks that are beyond the control of the company. However, third-party networks do not have a number of security features built into corporate networks. This means that storing corporate data on BYOD-approved devices can expose employees to security threats when they connect to third-party wireless networks.

2. Malformed content

Most employees are unaware that adversaries can exploit vulnerabilities in broken content like videos, landing pages, etc. to gain access to a specific operating system or app. Furthermore, using Android devices can be easily hacked due to software vulnerabilities in the media processing component of Android.

3. Lost or stolen devices

One of the most common causes of the BYOD security problem is lost or stolen devices. Hackers can steal an employee device for its worth, and the information on the device can be accessed through hardware and software vulnerabilities. This means corporate data can leak if the device is stolen.

4. Operating system-related security vulnerabilities

Most companies use a single software ecosystem to run their operations. However, with the introduction of BYOD, a combination of iOS, Android and Windows is showing up in the workplace. This indicates that each device has a different operating system and framework it runs on, as well as different security vulnerabilities, increasing the likelihood of hacking and data breach.

5. Malicious apps

Not all apps installed on a device are actually safe, even the apps that can be found in official app stores. Additionally, hackers can use malicious apps to control the user’s device, resulting in loss of work information, data theft, and call charges.

How do you make BYOD secure?

1. Set up BYOD security policies for all external devices

Make sure that a strict security policy is in place before employees can access company data. This policy should include the need for complex passwords, lock screens, constant updates / patches, security scans, restricted access, and more.

2. Do not allow any rooted devices

Most rooted devices are considered “easily compromised” devices. This means that the device is more vulnerable to security breaches, viruses, ransomware attacks, Trojans, fileless malware and other cyber threats.

3. Save business data and personal data separately

As a healthy security practice, management suites can delete data from the device. However, it is always recommended that companies provide a number of “company-approved apps” that can store data for personal use.

4. Encryption is the key to the secure storage of company data

All corporate data stored on the device should be encrypted so that the data is not easily accessible if the device is compromised.

5. Connect to VPNs

For an added layer of security, employees should be asked to use a VPN connection when connecting to the company’s server.

More information about BYOD security

Organizations that enforce a BYOD culture are often faced with malware infections, compromised DNS, stolen data, and much more. To ensure that you can protect the company from the above threats, take the EC-Council’s Network Security Certification Course – Certified Network Defender (CND).

This course is a competency-based, labor-intensive network security program based on job task analysis. It will also help develop network administrators’ network defense skills.

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  1. https://resources.infosecinstitute.com/category/certifications-training/ethical-hacking/attacking-wireless-networks/byod-vulnerabilities/
  2. https://www.forcepoint.com/cyber-edu/bring-your-own-device-byod

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