How your employees’ mobile devices pose security threats to your business

How your employees’ mobile devices pose security threats to your business

Mobile devices allow users to access emails, documents, text messages, images, and videos at the palm of their hands. And with advancements in cloud technology, it’s no surprise why many employees now opt to work remotely.

Remote work policies also allow businesses to enjoy increased productivity and higher bottom lines. But before you implement bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies, it’s important that you secure employee devices, and here’s why.

#1. Higher risk of lost devices

A recent study by Kensington has found that 70 million mobile phones are lost each year, and one laptop is stolen every 53 seconds. What’s more, Pew Research Center reports that 28% of smartphone owners don’t use screen lock or other security features to prevent unauthorised access. If those smartphones contain confidential company files, your business is more prone to suffering a major data breach.

#2. Unsecure free WiFi networks

Connecting to a free WiFi network in public areas like airports, shopping malls, and coffee shops also pose a serious risk. But by connecting to it, you’re actually exposing your phone’s internal data (e.g., credit card numbers, personal identifiable information, emails, and passwords) to anyone on the same network, including hackers.

#3. Outdated apps and operating system

Did you know that 75% of smartphone users don't install mobile device updates as soon as they're available? Every missed update leaves mobile devices and your company more vulnerable to the latest malware attack. And if your employees use mobile devices to handle work-related documents, they're essentially giving hackers easy access to sensitive information.

#4. Undetected mobile malware

Although Android’s and Apple’s app stores are highly regulated and vigorously monitored for malware-infected apps, sometimes malware evades detection. That’s why hundreds of apps are forcibly removed from these app stores every year. But the files of users who downloaded these apps before they were found to contain malware may already be compromised.

#5. Unknown QR codes

Quick Response codes (black, square-shaped barcodes) are used almost everywhere, as they easily link users to a URL or an application in just a few seconds. But the downside of using a QR code is that you never know where it links to before you scan it. If the link ends up being a fake, malware-laden website, the hacker will be able to exploit your device and its files. This is a problem, especially more so if the now-infected device is the same device you use for your work.

Don’t let these security threats stop you from allowing your employees to use their mobile devices at work. Easily eliminate malware, hackers, and other security threats by knowing how to properly manage and protect your employees’ devices. Our OfficeTek experts are always willing to answer any cybersecurity concerns you have, so send us a message or give us a call at 0121 525 0016. You can also learn more about cybersecurity today by downloading our FREE eBook: A Business Owners Guide to Cyber Security.