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09 January 2017 laia

Bettter Business With BYOD

Beyond ‘Bring Your Own Device’ (BYOD) in which employees use their personal mobile devices in the workplace and which has spread organically into businesses across the country, lies strategic BYOD, in which enterprises stand to gain a push-start into the digital realm. This is according to Paulo Ferreira, Director of Enterprise Mobility at Samsung Electronics South Africa.

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) has had its challenges in South African businesses in recent years. BYOD has the advantages of allowing employees to utilise the devices and operating systems they prefer, boosts productivity and can help companies curb costs. On the other hand, poorly-managed BYOD could present risks of data loss and open the door for cyber criminals to infiltrate the company networks. In order to make the most of the potential of BYOD, companies need to move quickly to gain control of the entire mobile environment.

“A recent Samsung South Africa research survey revealed that over 84% of respondents offer some or full support for employees who depend on their own devices for work functions, while only 17.76% said their organisations had an extensively developed mobile strategy in place,” says Ferreira.

BYOD is a reality in most South African companies, whether they have official mobile and BYOD strategies or not. With increased sales of smart mobile devices in South Africa today destined for implementation within corporates, cellphones and tablets owned by staff are already accessing company email, shared files and other enterprise information daily.

“Tablets, smart wearables and a growing range of Internet of Things (IoT) connected devices are entering the enterprise environment. Companies have to take a strategic approach to managing and securing this environment,” Ferreira mentions.

Among the questions the organisation must consider are:

  • Who can access the network?
  • What can they access?
  • What enterprise applications should be available to staff out of the office?
  • Should mobile access be limited if an employee is in a particular area where WiFi networks may not be secure?
  • How is data protected when it leaves the building on an employee’s mobile device or when being sent between the enterprise and the device?
  • How secure are employee mobile devices themselves?

Samsung’s own flagship mobile devices include security features such as Samsung’s KNOX security platform to protect, secure and separate personal use from work use within the device. In addition to security, Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) solutions are crucial to enable enterprises to manage the heterogeneous mobile environment.

“Businesses have to implement strategic mobile enterprise strategies now, before the connected mobile ecosystem expands beyond their control. We believe that strategic mobile enterprise and BYOD management will ensure that the organisation runs more efficiently in the digital world, without risking data loss or theft and compromising the management of enterprise systems. In addition, having full integration and management of all mobile devices in the company environment makes it easier and cost effective for companies to roll out innovative new enterprise applications,” Ferreira concludes.

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