You must have noticed that we live in an era of abbreviations. Mixture of CIO, CRM, ASAP or BYOD – OMG, right?
However, it’s not over, since I would like to introduce to you BYOA – Bring Your Own Application, the new potential risk all the companies will probably face. With BYOD gaining popularity, BYOA was an obvious continuation. Some say it may even be more problematic than its older brother. People are accustomed to using certain programs and applications, mostly because they grew to be able to use them properly. That is why, they feel more comfortable and safe using them at work.
The problems spin around the following:
- Security – it is, as usual, the most common problem. Employees bring their devices to work and save their corporate drafts, data, and files in their own cloud-based applications, which are not synced with company’s server. This, in case of potential theft, causes risks of losing and compromising company’s data. IT department doesn’t have any control upon these applications, therefore cannot wipe the hard drives if such situation arises.
- Incompatibility – the situation where employees use different operating systems causes an obvious issue. Especially, because of different technologies and upgrades, different applications that aren’t widely used or something as simple as different files format that must be converted to be shared with co-workers.
- Malware – it is much simpler to protect the programs that are set as company’s default. However, employees may bring lots of unknown malware from unidentified sources that can be very difficult to fight against. Since some applications like to behave their own way, it becomes hard to control them, as they have access to your information.
How to cope with all the above?
Companies must take into consideration special policies controlling flow of information and mandatory partitions to separate the data. This should be combined with tools managing unknown applications (e.g. a special platform that monitors the application and informs when it detects any problems). Also, it’s worth installing a GPS tracker on personal devices to be able to follow them in case of thefts. This would not only control the BYOD movement, but also its little brother – the BYOA.
People always value having an option. If they are able to use something they know and feel familiar with at work – they will do it. In this fast pacing world, standards change quickly all we need to do is accept them with a tinge of attention.