If you aren’t worried about mobile security threats, then you haven’t been paying attention.
The Pew Research Center reports that a whopping 95% of all Americans now own a cellphone – 77% of which are smartphones. In fact, the same study concludes that just over half of U.S. adults also own some kind of tablet computer.
Thus, whether it be via email or another job-specific app, chances are very high that your employees regularly use a smartphone or tablet to access corporate information. But as the usage of mobile devices in the workplace continues to increase, so too do the risks that threaten the security of your business.
Building a cybersecurity program that accounts not just for traditional IT hazards, but also those types of breaches specific to mobile devices is now imperative if you intend to protect your data. Mobile cybersecurity, therefore, defines those behaviors, policies, and software you can install in an effort to curb these security threats before they occur.
Mobile Security Threats to Look Out For
- Data Leaks: As your sensitive information is spread across more devices than ever before, your business becomes vulnerable to a potential data leak. Hostile apps can access personal – and, therefore, corporate – data via permissions on a mobile device, leading to unnoticed breaches.
- Unsecured Wi-Fi: Unlike desktop systems, mobile devices regularly tap unsecured or downright spoofed networks, thus leaving the door open to hackers.
- Phishing: Social engineering tricks like phishing are more successful on smartphones or tablets than traditional devices, making your business more sensitive to cybersecurity hacks than ever before.
- Improper Password Management: Employees who reuse passwords across personal and corporate accounts leave your business’s defenses weak, especially when accessed over a mobile device.
- Out-Of-Date Technology: Devices without the latest software update – or, for that matter, the latest hardware – pose a greater risk to your information.
Tips & Tricks for Improving Your Mobile Cybersecurity
- Establish a Mobile Device Policy: Whether you provide your employees with a company-issued smartphone or operate on a BYOD (bring-your-own-device) model, your business can likely benefit from laying out guidelines for proper mobile usage.
- Keep Devices Updated: Regularly update both the software and hardware used by your employees to ensure the most secure IT system possible.
- Maintain Password Health: Create complex, single-use passwords with two-factor authentication on all mobile devices for the strongest first line of defense.
- Monitor Activity: Consider email, call, and activity monitoring programs to help you keep track of potentially risky mobile behavior.
- Consider Security Software: Additional services like DLPs (Data Loss Prevention Tools) and VPNs (Virtual Private Networks) can add another layer of protection to your mobile cybersecurity.
- Backup Your Data: Breaches happen, remember to regularly back up all of your mobile data in case of an emergency.
The long and short of it is this: the world of mobile technology moves fast – but so do the hackers that endanger your security. Cultivating a proactive mobile cybersecurity program today can help your business keep up the pace without sacrificing your data in the future.