woman using mobile device and employer looking at phoneMobile security remains the number one pain-point for IT. However, when speaking with employees across industry verticals, I am sure it comes as no surprise to hear that their biggest concern with a “formal” Bring Your Own (BYO) program is personal privacy. “I don’t want my company seeing what websites I am surfing or my personal content,” said a product manager for a major electronics manufacturer.

Twenty years ago, having a company-issued mobile device was seen as a privilege. Today, consumers are the driving force in reshaping the business IT landscape with the proliferation of mobile devices and apps in the enterprise.

video on mobility and employee privacy

This all started with business executives demanding access to work emails and calendars on their prized iPhones and iPads — the same devices that their kids are using to play Angry Birds. Now, the flood gates are open. Employees and contractors across the enterprise are using their personal smartphones and tablets to access and share sensitive business information, often times using consumer applications that are a magnet for malicious attacks.

While workers enjoy the convenience of having one device for work and play, the thought of big brother knowing what websites they visited and apps they downloaded is a turn-off. An even greater concern is the loss of personal content if for some reason their device is wiped by their IT department.

Should your mobile strategy focus more on corporate data security and less on end-user privacy?  AT&T video series, 4 Forces of Mobility – Force 3: employee privacy looks at key challenges organizations should address in order to thrive in a mobile world. This episode includes a brief video by IDC Research Analyst, Ben Hoffman and a white paper from leading technology publication, UBM Tech.

Check it out. I think you will be armed with great insight to develop or fine-tune your organization’s strategy to reap the benefits of BYOD.