It’s no secret that mobile technology continues to support businesses in enabling more flexible and efficient working practices. The ability to work remotely brings numerous benefits to a business, both internally and externally, from enabling employees to join video conferences while traveling for business, to how they’re able to service clients wherever they are.
As a result, mobile working is on the rise and is set to increase further in the next few years. IDC predicts three quarters of the Western European workforce will be mobile by next year. It’s vital therefore that companies recognise the need to embrace mobile technology to not only drive staff engagement and workplace satisfaction, but also increase productivity while making long term cost savings.
However, remote working has also introduced new challenges to businesses when it comes to protecting business critical data. We recently surveyed 400 senior IT decision makers in the UK, France and Germany, over half of which (54%) say that data security is one of their priorities for IT investment.
The risks of mobile working
Almost two-thirds (62%) of employees currently use personal devices for remote working. IT Manager’s biggest concern are employees taking sensitive data around with them remotely, particularly on devices that they have no control over.
As a result, while businesses explore the benefits of mobile technology such as laptop, tablet and hybrid devices, many are also discovering the challenges and risks associated with them if they do not invest in business-grade devices and manage them appropriately, particularly when it comes to security.
Whilst some companies are recognising the associated risks with mobile working and are following certain steps to reduce the risks, many are using consumer devices that do not have the same security capabilities compared with business grade devices. This reduces the ability to work remotely, access company data and increase productivity and efficiency.
>See also: The role of the CIO in a digital age
CIOs are facing challenges when it comes to flexible working, such as securing corporate data, which will continue to be an ongoing battle. Even businesses with strong device usage policies and management strategies have been victims of data loss or a breach as a direct result of working remotely.
CIOs will need to implement a security strategy that covers remote working as there is always the risk of human error with a company device getting stolen or employees leaving their devices on different modes of transport.
Implementing a secure mobile working strategy
CIOs need to implement a secure mobile working strategy for their business in order to create a happier workforce by allowing employees to work flexibly when and where suits them the most.
The right technology for CIOs will provide the mobility and reliability needed to enable a flexible workforce, whilst offering an advanced level of security and peace of mind for today’s businesses. This is vital to protect the business critical data that is stored on these devices or accessible through their networks from being vulnerable to attacks and third party interference.
As a first port of defence biometric measures such as fingerprint sensors and IR-cameras can be used to prevent unauthorised users from accessing or unlocking devices in the event they are lost or stolen.
However, further security features such as Trusted Platform Module 2.0 can be used to prevent organisations’ data from being accessed too.
Windows Hello and Intel® Authenticate can also act as an initial security barrier, both of which are available on Toshiba’s X series business laptops. These features enhance encryption and secure sign-in options, helping to protect valuable stored keys and credentials.
For even greater peace of mind, businesses who purchase a Toshiba device can be assured that its devices are built entirely in-house to avoid third party interference – right down to the BIOS.
These built-in features enable staff to work flexibly – anywhere, anytime, and without compromising on security.
Sourced by Neil Bramley, B2B PC business unit director, Toshiba Northern Europe