Five Tips for Overcoming Mobile Security Challenges

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Best Practice No. 2: Create a Mobile User/Remote Access Policy

Setting up secure mobile access is essential to safeguarding corporate information from being exposed to mobile threats. First, companies should insist that employees use a PIN or strong password to access a device’s operating environment or apps as a first line of defense against data theft if a device is lost or stolen. Second, companies should seek secure mobile access solutions that use context-aware authentication, network access controls and a virtual private network to allow only authorized users and mobile apps, along with validated devices, to access corporate resources. A secure mobile access solution with these capabilities can reduce the risk of compromised devices or mobile apps that could act as a conduit for malware to infect corporate resources as well as prevent in-flight data theft.

Equally important is educating employees so they’ll avoid some of the basic behaviors that could introduce malware or expose corporate information to undue risk. For example, employees should be instructed to avoid Wi-Fi hotspots for work without a VPN connection. Additionally, IT departments should deploy systems management on all devices so regular OS updates, including security patches, can be installed automatically on smartphones, tablets and laptops to eliminate the possibility of exploiting security flaws in earlier versions.

Finding a balance between providing employees anytime, anywhere access to enterprise resources and ensuring that IT security and compliance rules are adhered to can be a daunting task for any organization looking to embrace mobility and BYOD. Throw in all the varied devices that can connect to an organization's network (i.e, smartphones, tablets, laptops, etc.) and the operating systems (Windows 8, Android, iOS), and the risk to data and application resources multiplies exponentially.

According to a recent Dell Global Security Survey, IT decision makers highlighted BYOD as a root cause of security breaches. In fact, 57 percent of those polled ranked increased use of mobile devices as a top security concern in the next five years (71 percent in the UK).

As with most things, the more restrictions people encounter, the more likely they are to rebel and find workarounds that allow them to do and or access what they want, circumventing an organization's security policies and placing proprietary data at risk.

To minimize security risks while maximizing mobility benefits, Dell offers five best practices for implementing mobile security that address user work preferences, device types, operating systems and enablement strategies.


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