Underscoring the global nature of the pandemic, a Madagascar man works from home on a laptop. Today’s columnist, Darren Guccione of Keeper Security, offers tips for locking down BYOD devices during the work-from-home era. WorldBankPhotoCollection CreativeCommons (Credit: CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, bring-your-own-device (BYOD) internal controls and data protection policies ranked fairly low on most priority lists. While many companies had BYOD programs, they often applied to only a small subset of employees and contractors. Then, the pandemic forced organizations to expand their remote-work programs at an unprecedented, emergency-level rate.  The result was that BYOD became a standard operating practice across the enterprise which required robust internal controls and safeguards for data protection and governance.

IT security professionals are deeply concerned about the cybersecurity implications. Sixty-seven percent of respondents to a recent survey by the Ponemon Institute and Keeper Security reported that use of their own mobile devices by remote workers has negatively impacted their organizations’ security posture and 55 percent say smartphones represent the most vulnerable endpoint at their organizations.  

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