SecurityBrief Australia logo
Australia's leading source of cybersecurity and cyber-attack news
Story image

Is BYOD the final mile to Digital Transformation success?

By Contributor
Tue 11 Jan 2022

Article by Forcepoint company Bitglass, founder and CTO, Anurag Kahol.

The concept of bring your own device (BYOD) has been around for years, but since the shift to more remote and hybrid working around the world, its popularity has reached bold new heights.

For many businesses without established remote working policies in place, BYOD was the only way they could stay operational during multiple national lockdowns and restrictions on movement over the past 18 months.

When done correctly, the benefits of BYOD can be plentiful, helping businesses to achieve much needed digital transformation success at a critical time. However, it also raises several security issues, which, if not dealt with properly, can quickly leave networks and data vulnerable to the growing number of cyber threats out there.

The rise and rise of BYOD

BYOD started as a cost-saving measure for businesses that didn’t want to continue paying for IT refreshes all the time, but fast forward to today, and very few digital transformation initiatives can be successfully achieved without it at their core.

In fact, 70 per cent of businesses now enable BYOD for employees, with 62 per cent also doing so for their extended employees, which includes contractors, partners, and suppliers. A further 18 per cent even enable BYOD for their customers.

Why is this? Because it didn’t take long for businesses to realise that BYOD offers numerous advantages beyond just cost savings on IT. In the same Cybersecurity Insiders study, 68 per cent of respondents said BYOD improved employee productivity, with 53 per cent saying it also led to better employee satisfaction.

Of course, the pandemic has also played a major role in accelerating BYOD adoption, with 47 per cent of those surveyed reporting that their programmes have increased significantly over the last 18 months.

However, one lingering issue that continues to hold BYOD adoption back for some organisations is security. This is because IT controlled everything in a traditional on-premises network environment, from network access and user ID to endpoints and data location.

However, in a ‘new normal’ BYOD remote environment, users control devices, operating systems and apps, data is everywhere, and IT doesn’t even own the infrastructure anymore. Understandably, this makes many of them quite nervous!

Solving this conundrum requires a combination of three key factors: visibility, control, and trust:

#1  Use technology to boost data visibility without impacting user privacy

A top concern for many IT teams is the lack of data visibility on personal employee devices being used in BYOD programs. In the past, this would be solved by deploying agent-based security tools like mobile device management on company-owned devices.

However, employees using personal devices as part of a BYOD program often resist this kind of approach, not only because it’s considered an invasion of privacy but also because it can impact device performance and functionality.

Conversely, agentless security tools that utilise cloud technology require no installation but still give security teams the control they need to monitor, track and even wipe sensitive data if/when necessary.

Furthermore, because agentless security tools only monitor company data on the device, employees can be confident that their personal data and activity remains completely private. Leading agentless security solutions even include cloud-based DLP as part of their offering, meaning businesses can cover multiple bases in one go.

#2   Optimise control with application whitelisting

From a control perspective, the use of application whitelisting can give IT teams greater security against malware and other malicious software without it becoming all-consuming in the way that blacklisting can. With new apps being released every day, maintaining an up-to-date blacklist can easily be a full-time job for multiple team members. Conversely, whitelisting allows teams to focus their efforts on apps that can be trusted in a BYOD environment, with everything else blocked by default.

#3  Improve trust and user awareness with regular security training

While technology can be a powerful way to improve security posture in a BYOD environment, one of the most effective tools is far simpler. Regular security training helps to minimise the threat of data theft or loss by promoting secure business practices and keeping employees vigilant to the most common security threats, such as phishing emails and other social engineering tactics typically used by cybercriminals.

The popularity and prevalence of BYOD programs continues to grow amongst businesses looking to achieve effective digital transformation. However, lingering security issues are still preventing some from fully embracing it.

Fortunately, many of the biggest concerns can be easily addressed through a combination of technology, smart security practice and regular employee training, leaving businesses of all shapes and sizes to enjoy the many benefits BYOD has to offer.

Related stories
Top stories
Story image
Tech job moves
Tech job moves - Adatree, Brother, Databricks, Nutanix & Rubrik
We round up all job appointments from May 20-26, 2022, in one place to keep you updated with the latest from across the tech industries.
Story image
Cybersecurity
4/10 Australian SMEs fallen victim to cyber-attacks since pandemic
Almost four out of teb SMEs in Australia have fallen victim to cyber-attacks since the pandemic began, according to a new study.
Story image
Transport
Third-party automotive apps bear significant privacy risks
Mobile applications for connected cars provide various features to make life easier for motorists, but they can also be a source of risk.
Story image
Malware
Fortinet introduces self-learning AI in latest offering
Fortinet is introducing self-learning AI capabilities in its new network detection and response offering, FortiNDR.
Story image
Malware
New vulnerabilities found in Nuspire’s Q1 2022 Threat Report
“Threat actors are quickly adjusting their tactics and these exploits tend to get industry attention, but the threat posed by older and attacks still persists."
Story image
Training
Trojan cyber attacks hitting SMBs harder than ever - Kaspersky
In 2022 the number of Trojan-PSW detections increased by almost a quarter compared to the same period in 2021 to reach 4,003,323.
Story image
New Relic
New Relic launches vulnerability management platform
New Relic has introduced New Relic Vulnerability Management to help organisations find and address security risks faster and with greater precision.
Story image
Identity and Access Management
The post-pandemic workforce requires secure IAM capabilities
HID Global discusses what identity and access management means for organisations in today's convoluted digital world.
Story image
Ransomware
APAC organisations fail to disclose ransomware breaches
85% of organisations in APAC were breached by ransomware at least once in the past five years, but only 28% publicly disclosed the incident.
Story image
Ransomware
Alarming surge in Conti Ransomware Group activity - report
A new report has identified a 7.6 per cent increase in the number of vulnerabilities tied to ransomware in Q1 2022.
Story image
Managed service provider
Barracuda MSP Day 2022 highlights MSP opportunities
Barracuda Networks has released a report showing global services-related MSP revenue is set to increase by more than a third in 2022 compared to 2021.
Story image
Phishing
WhatsApp and QR codes the next scam threat - report
KnowBe4 has warned it expects to see an increase in QR Codes and the WhatsApp chat platform being used for phishing and other scams. 
Story image
Vectra AI
Understanding the weight on security leader’s shoulders, and how to shift it
Millions of dollars of government funding and internal budgets are being funnelled into cybersecurity to build resilience against sophisticated threats, indicating how serious this issue has become.
Story image
Kubernetes
Sysdig unveils new Kubernetes troubleshooting and cloud innovations
Sysdig has introduced two new innovations that look to help bolster cloud services and simplify Kubernetes troubleshooting.
Story image
Ransomware
Employees on the frontline of cyber defense - report
In the first quarter of 2022, employees found themselves more than ever at the frontline of cyber defense, according to a new report from Kroll. 
Story image
Cybersecurity
More than 40% of banks worried about cloud security - report
Publicis Sapient's new report finds security and the lack of cloud skills and internal understanding of business benefits are big obstacles for banks moving to the cloud.
Story image
Surveillance
i-PRO releases smallest AI-based surveillance camera on the market
The new i-PRO mini network camera is now available, with a pocket-sized form factor and full AI analytics functionality.
Story image
Cybersecurity
What every CISO must answer to enable a best-in-class security operations program
It has been widely reported recently that South Australian government employees have been the victims of a cyberattack.
Story image
Amazon Web Services / AWS
RedShield leverages AWS to scale cybersecurity services
"Working with AWS gives RedShield the ability to mitigate significant application layer DDoS attacks, helping leaders adopt best practices and security architectures."
Story image
Microsoft
Global cybersecurity insurance market worth $11.5b this year
Future Market Insights finds the cybersecurity insurance market is expected to reach USD$11.5 billion in 2022, growing to $61.2 billion in 10 years.
Story image
Data Protection
Information management capabilities to meet privacy requirements
Organisations with customers or operations across more than one country face a spate of new and proposed privacy and data protection laws.
Story image
Remote Working
Successful digital transformation in the hybrid work era is about embracing shifting goalposts
As organisations embraced remote working, many discovered they lacked the infrastructure needed to support history’s first global load test of remote work capabilities.
Story image
Data Protection
Barracuda launches new capabilities for API Protection
"Every business needs this type of critical protection against API vulnerabilities and automated bot attacks," Barracuda says.
Story image
BYOD / Bring Your Own Device
How zero trust can lead the battle against ransomware
SecOps teams champion a zero trust strategy to support the fight against the escalating risk of cybercrime and help monitor threat actors across a network.
Story image
Ransomware
APAC ranks third-highest region targeted by ransomware
Asia Pacific has ranked the third-highest region globally to be targeted by ransomware, according to cybersecurity firm Group-IB.
Story image
Phishing
MailGuard warns of new scam targeting Telstra customers
Telstra customers in Australia are being warned of a new scam involving "Unsuccessful Payment" messages.
Story image
ChildFund
ChildFund launches new campaign to protect children online
ChildFund says WEB Safe & Wise aims to protect children from sexual exploitation and abuse online while also empowering them to become digitally savvy. 
Story image
Cybersecurity
Asia Pacific plagued by sophisticated bad bots - report
The three most common bot attacks were account takeover, content or price scraping, and scalping to obtain limited-availability items.
Story image
Employment
Tech job moves - Forcepoint, Malwarebytes, SolarWinds & VMware
We round up all job appointments from May 13-20, 2022, in one place to keep you updated with the latest from across the tech industries.
Story image
Check Point
Check Point and CCTV expert join forces to boost protection
The partnership will involve Check Point Quantum IoT Protect Nano Agent being embedded in Provision-ISR’s CCTV cameras for on-device runtime protection.
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
Gartner reveals top three tech trends for banks this year
Gartner says generative artificial intelligence, autonomic systems and privacy-enhancing computation are gaining traction in banking and investment services.
Story image
Migration
Let’s clear the cloud visibility haze with app awareness
Increasingly, organisations are heading for the cloud, initiating new born-in-the-cloud architectures and migrating existing applications via ‘lift and shift’ or refactoring.
Story image
VPN
The most common online scams in Australia
No one is safe from online scammers, and many of these scammers have capitalised on the pandemic, using this confusing time to attack more people than ever.
Story image
Cloud Security
Aqua Security createa unified scanner for cloud native security
“By integrating more cloud native scanning targets into Trivy, such as Kubernetes, we are simplifying cloud native security."
Story image
Microsoft
Elevation of Privilege the top 2021 Microsoft vulnerability
BeyondTrust has released its 2022 Microsoft Vulnerabilities Report, finding that Elevation of Privilege is the top vulnerability category for the second consecutive year.
Story image
Training
Infosec unveils role-guided cybersecurity training roadmaps
Infosec Skills Roles maps hands-on training and certifications to the 12 most in-demand cybersecurity roles to maximise training efficiency.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Noname Security partners with Netpoleon to target API issues
Specialist API security firm Noname Security has appointed Netpoleon as its distributor in Australia and New Zealand.
Story image
Customer experience
Gartner recognises Okta for abilities in Access Management
Okta has announced it has been recognised as a Customers' Choice for the fourth time in a row in the Gartner Peer Insights "Voice of the Customer" report.
Story image
Malware
'Alarming' rise in ransomware threats - Verizon report
As criminals look to leverage increasingly sophisticated forms of malware, it is ransomware that continues to prove particularly successful.
Story image
Silver Peak
The path to an adaptive, modern network
Managing and securing the network looks different than it did just two years ago—especially given that most of these networks are made up of multi-generations of infrastructure stitched together over time.
Story image
Remote Working
Australia’s remote workers face connectivity and security issues
SOTI's new report finds better video conferencing technology and improved security measures are top concerns for remote workers in Australia.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Cybersecurity prompts upgrade for 1.3 billion electricity meters
ABI Research finds Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) and cybersecurity concerns are prompting the upgrade of 1.3 billion electricity meters by 2027.
Story image
Ponemon Institute
Email revealed to be riskiest channel for data loss
More than half (60%) of organisations experienced data loss or exfiltration caused by an employee mistake on email in the last 12 months.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Accenture - a collective security approach a driving factor for cyber resilience
With the approaching Davos World Economic Forum upon us, it is even more imperative to discuss the impact of cybersecurity on business operations leading into the future.