What Steps Should Your Organization Take at Smartphones End of Life
Last year in Spring, a man named Tom Paterson had problems with his smartphone and it eventually stopped working. He returned it to T-Mobile, which emailed him back a replacement phone, with a few extras.
When Tom turned on the device, he encountered a plethora of personal data and apps from the previous owner that hadn't been deleted by the phone's provider, including contacts, social media accounts and apps. When this surfaced through social media it led to a very embarrassing article being written in The New York Times.
The amount of smart devices (Smartphones and tablets) in the workplace is estimated to be exceeding one billion so with data being worth its weight in gold, CIOs and other executives are becoming increasingly concerned with this up and coming security risk. Any one of those devices could contain data from spam emails to an organisation's mission critical passwords, customer information and intellectual property that would be devastating in the wrong hands.
With this now posing itself as a major risk, here are a few ways to make sure your smart devices don't become a smart bomb!
#1: Write up a clear set of rules
Protecting your data should be your organisation's number one security priority. All employees that bring a device into their daily business life should be well versed with what they are allowed to do with the phone and what is prohibited. Make sure your email, browser and any apps on the devices are being used to their intended use to maintain the highest level of security. The best way to do this is to make sure employees have password protected devices and to have a strict browsing policy when using the internet to reduce the risk of data being stolen through malware.
#2: Teach the users well
After you have devised your new smart device policy, the users must be taught. Your HR and Internal Communications should be well versed. New employees to the company should be taught as part of the initiation and receive on-going reminders of this.
#3: Erase the device at the end of its usage
Lastly, it should be stated in the smart phones policy what happens to data when the device is at the end of its functionality. This includes making sure ALL data is thoroughly removed from the device before it is resold or discarded. Imagine if it was your phone that Tom was given. Depending on the information the device could do some serious damage!
As more corporate data becomes mobile, the more risk comes to data security and your business should act accordingly . Don't become a statistic and secure your business with ITADwise
Blanco Technology Group
The New York Times