BYOD policies essential to keep data secure in the public sector

Several organisations within the public sector still need to give ‘Bring Your Own Device' (BYOD) initiatives proper consideration. Only then can security risks be avoided and the benefits of BYOD completely achieved.

 

New research from Annodata surveyed 100 UK IT decision makers from public sector organisations. The results showed that currently only 22 percent of companies have a BYOD policy in place and another 43 percent are unsure whether they do or not.

 

The public sector's strict guidelines on data security to keep citizen's confidential information secure are set to get stricter with the upcoming General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) implementation. Because of this, it's important for organisations to have a clear BYOD strategy in place before employees use their own devices to access an organisation's data.

 

“Special emphasis needs to be put on the security aspects relating to BYOD and many public sector organisations are yet to put in place specific and enforceable policies. However, this is the perfect opportunity for these organisations to review existing IT policies and how information is managed. By doing so, risks can be mitigated and the real benefits, such as productivity and efficiency gains, can be achieved,” said Andrew Smith, technical director at Annodata. “With this trend growing, technology is there to support such initiatives, particularly as vendors are working to improve the efficiency of mobile solutions as well as trying to make them more secure. This means working with the right vendor who can conduct a thorough and comprehensive review is essential.”

 

“BYOD is certainly here to stay and will continue to gain traction. Consequently, preparing a BYOD strategy should be at the forefront for companies that don't currently have one in place. Employees now wish to use their mobile phones at work and do so in order to make their lives easier. To this end, users want to have the same access to documents and print capabilities on mobile devices as they have on desktops, and with digital workflow becoming more important than ever, seamless printer access is just one example of how BYOD can enable the public sector to be more productive,” Smith concluded.