Most in IT not prepared to manage BYOD trend: Survey

Personal mobile devices lead to security concerns, management challenges
|hrreporter.com|Last Updated: 04/19/2012

With the increased use of mobile devices in the workplace, 44 per cent of 400 IT professionals surveyed said they've seen an increase in help desk requests, more than 40 per cent have experienced an increase in network traffic and more than 15 per cent have experienced an increase in security issues.

Respondents expressed security concerns and IT support challenges when it came to the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trend. They cited the potential for loss of confidential information; legal issues and regulatory compliance risks; the introduction of malware threats; and the management burden associated with supporting diverse types of devices, found the survey by SolarWinds, provider of IT management software, in partnership with Network World.

"IT professionals know that the BYOD trend is coming — or has already arrived — and many don't know how much support or oversight they should provide on personal mobile devices," said Sanjay Castelino, vice-president of product marketing at SolarWinds. "They are trying to build the boat while sailing it and are learning every day what the implications of BYOD are to their corporate networks."

More than 65 per cent of respondents said they don't have the necessary tools to manage non-company-issued mobile devices on the network. Depending on the company policy, specific devices may be prohibited, devices may have to be approved or personal devices may be banned altogether.

"Respondents said they're employing a wide range of vendor tools and security tactics in order to provide safe, productive mobile access to employees," said Ann Bednarz, associate online news editor at Network World. "Usage policies vary and many are a work in progress as business priorities shift and access technologies mature. Determining security policies that can be reasonably enforced on personal mobile devices is tricky."

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