Modern Workers Must Protect Mobile Security in All Environments
Mobile technology has transformed the workplace. No longer are employees chained to their desktop computers, as the advent of smart phones, tablets and lightweight laptops means they can take their work virtually anywhere. But with every technological innovation comes new risks. Modern workers must now be prepared to protect their mobile security in a number of environments. Here are some tips on how to make sure your personal data is secure no matter where you are.
At the Office
If you frequently visit your company's main offices for work, then the IT department likely has some standards in place to help protect employee privacy. If you're unclear on the policies, ask for additional training, or review your employee handbook for guidance. If your business employs a bring-your-own-device policy, then you'll need to find a way to make sure any personal activities on your mobile devices don't interfere with your business operations. One way to do this is to install a virtual phone number that can be used solely for work-related purposes, leaving your original number intact for personal use. In the case that your phone somehow becomes compromised, the IT staff at your business can wipe and replace the business-related number, ensuring that it won't be used as a target for malware or spamming.
Telecommuting is a common practice in many industries, but it also can make it difficult to keep personal matters isolated from business. If you use your home computer to do satellite work for your business, then be sure to track the amount of time you spend attending to non-work-related matters. If you find that you're using social media while doing your work, you may be exposing your business data to attacks from online fraudsters. It may be beneficial to install software that tracks how much time you spend doing certain tasks, so you can analyze your work productivity and make adjustments as necessary.
On the Go
If you frequently travel for your job, then your mobile devices are likely some of your best companions. Still, you face unique threats when traveling with your smart phone, tablet or laptop. If you are an air traveler, then it's probably best to keep your electronics in your carry-on, as you wouldn't want to end up at your destination to find that your cell phone - with all of your important documents - is hundreds of miles away. Be careful when using these devices in busy public places like airports. Thieves are constantly on the lookout for phones and other items they can nab off of unsuspecting individuals, and if you're flaunting your devices in a busy terminal, odds are they'll see you as a viable target. Be sure to password protect all of your mobile devices, as this will make it difficult for thieves to access your data should the unthinkable happen.
Be thankful that you live in a world where mobile technology allows you to work from a variety of locations - but don't take it for granted. Do everything in your power to keep your data safe, whether you're in your pajamas at home, at your office desk or on an international flight.