CEO Best Practices

4 Ways Using Your Mobile Device for Business Can Put You At Risk

When it comes to technology, there’s no doubt that mobile devices have made both our personal and professional lives way easier. Because of smartphones, tablets, and other kinds of mobile devices, we can take our work with us anywhere and get things done on the go. We can be in constant communication with our employees, executives, IT management, and our customers.

But, while our phones help us in tons of ways, they can also hinder us in others. Conducting certain aspects of business on your mobile device can put you at a huge cyber security risk. Before you conduct any more business on your phone, read up on this.

1. Handling Money on Your Phone

Smart devices give us the incredible ability to manage money from anywhere. Whether it’s accepting money on Paypal, sending money on Venmo, depositing a check via your online banking app, or making an order on a website, there’s really no limit as to what you can do.

Unfortunately, sometimes convenience comes with a catch. The ability to do many transactions from a single device, a device that’s most likely not protected, can lead to attacks from all sides. Therefore, using your phone to handle any type of transaction can make you more susceptible to hackers and other cybersecurity dangers.

2. Having Loose BYOD Policies

Nowadays, many companies are implementing BYOD, or a Bring Your Own Device policy. It’s a way for employees to have more flexibility with their work, as they won’t be limited to what they can do, how they can do it, and when and where they can do it.

While there are many great benefits to BYOD, there are also, of course, security risks. In fact, even though company executives certainly don’t want their employees to be distracted by their mobile devices, the primary reason companies are skeptical about BYOD is because of the risk associated with it. Someone who brings their phone to work can easily connect to a network anywhere they go afterwards. And, if one of those networks isn’t secure, a hacker can get in and access anything that the employee has access too. Most of the time, without the employee even knowing about it.

3. Dangerous Apps

If there was something infecting your phone or mobile device, would you know it was there? Probably not. Detecting malware on a phone might not be easy for the ordinary user. But, it’s great for hackers who want a simple job. In general, most malware types that infect phones comes from suspicious apps. Hackers can get into the phone and easily take any sensitive information you have tied to your business. Again, this can be done without you even realizing it.

We’re not saying don’t download apps. But, if you’re using the same mobile device that you’re downloading apps on as you do for your business, you’re putting your company at risk. Additionally, if you have malware on your phone unbeknownst to you, and then you go and reconnect that phone to your company’s main network, you can infect others in your office as well.

4. More Work for IT

Using your mobile device for business can put you at risk. Even if you’re trying to be proactive, at the end of the day, it’s more work for IT. And, that’s if you’re even running security measures on your phone in the first place. (Most companies don’t.) Your IT team or your security vendor is already doing all it can to protect your network and, most of all, the computers hooked up to that network. While adding on a couple of phones shouldn’t be too difficult, you don’t want to have IT lose their focus on the main action, just so you can bring work around with you (probably to somewhere you shouldn’t be bringing it, anyway.)

That old saying, “Don’t mix business and pleasure,” can be interpreted many different ways. But, in this case, it can’t be any more clear. Your phone may make business run smoother, but it may be only a matter of time before that changes. Sometimes, leaving your phone at home isn’t such a bad thing.

Smeester & Associates can provide you with everything you need to know in making important security decisions for your company. Like, whether or not you should run business on your mobile device. 

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