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4 simple ways to secure mobile data when you’re on the go

Over the years, working on the go has become the norm for business professionals everywhere. But at this point, it’s more than just the norm … it’s critical to success.

If your team isn’t mobile, then everything from productivity and employee morale to customer service and efficiency will suffer.

And ultimately, this suffering will only hurt your competitive edge and damage your company’s reputation.

This being said, mobility doesn’t come free of risk. In fact, the more mobile you are, the more at risk you are of data loss, security breaches, and cyber threats. Which means you have a major dilemma on your hands.

So naturally, the question becomes: How can you successfully secure mobile data when you’re on the move?  

Let’s break it down, shall we?

Lock thy device

First and foremost, lock your devices. And this doesn’t just mean your cell phone. This includes your tablet, laptop, and yes … even your home computer.

No device should ever be left wide-open, and no passerby should ever have the ability to open your device and immediately start snooping. You must make it as hard as possible for criminals to get into your devices — because remember: the easier it is to get into your devices, the easier it is for criminals to snatch your mobile data.

However, just because logging into your computer might feel significantly different than logging into your online banking account or email, this doesn’t mean you should drop traditional password-building strategies.

While your phone or tablet may have limitations, your computer and laptop usually don’t. Keep these passwords just as strong as any other password you would create.

Public vs. Private

Unfortunately for every coffee shop-loving person out there, public connections aren’t always the safest things on the Wi-Fi block. In fact, there is such a thing as a fake Wi-Fi hotspot. If you hop onto a connection like this, you might be infected with a nasty virus.

Or worse … a criminal may have the ability to track everything you type and everywhere you go. And if you’re worried about the security of your mobile data, then this is one thing you should probably avoid.

If connecting to public Wi-Fi can’t be avoided, just make sure you aren’t accessing anything sensitive. And keep in mind, this doesn’t just involve sensitive business data … this should also account for personal messages, banking information, and things of that nature.  

2FA is where it’s at

Wherever possible, consider using 2FA for your online accounts (otherwise known as two-factor authentication, two-step authentication, or multi-factor authentication). 2FA is especially critical for apps or sites that directly (or even indirectly) include banking, health, legal, or communication information.

2FA is typically very simple to implement, and the added security it provides makes the “second factor” worth it. This second step may include an email asking you to verify the login (which may only be sent to you if it’s an unrecognized browser) or it could be a password and a security question.

Usually, 2FA involves: something you know (like a password or question), something you have (like an email or text message), or something you are (like a fingerprint).

An expert knows best

That’s right. You can’t do everything alone — especially when it comes to business security.

These days, the majority of Managed Service Providers offer some form of on-the-go data protection. They can help you manage mobile devices or provide your company with a business-grade solution for file-sharing.  

Adding features like these to your traditional security solution can mean the difference between a completely secure business and one littered with vulnerabilities and holes.

These tips are only just the beginning. Securing your on-the-go data requires dedication and an ever-evolving security solution. If you’d like to learn more about securing your mobile data, then give us a call or send us a message today. We’d love to chat.

A Smarter Approach to Mobile Device Management – Five Questions to Consider

More people today use personal mobile devices like smartphones and tablets for business purposes. Such devices, coupled with greater Wi-Fi accessibility and cloud services, have empowered us with the ability to access data and do business from practically anywhere at any time. Needless to say, many small-to-medium sized business owners have embraced the BYOD (Bring-Your-Own-Device) revolution. The benefits are obvious; increased employee productivity, enhanced services to customers/clients, and better overall customer and employee satisfaction. But what about the potential consequences associated with this mobility revolution? Are small business owners doing enough preemptive planning to address potential risks that could arise with the use of BYOD devices?

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Mobile Device Management – Five Questions Every SMB Should Ask First, it is important that small business owners honestly assess whether their systems, networks, data, and overall infrastructure are ready for the use of an array of mobile devices. Once it is firmly established that both internal IT and components in the cloud are prepared for BYOD, solutions should then be put into practice that are concurrent with terms of use policies or any guidelines pertaining to remote/telecommute workers or the sharing of sensitive data. The following questions should be answered.

  1. What particular devices or applications are permissible for work use? Assuming security requirements are in place, not every device or application will meet those.
  2. Will anyone in the company be tasked with the daily management of BYOB strategies? What should BYOD policies cover and what kind of management solutions will be needed? Would a BYOD management tool that collects device information, deploys and monitors usage, and offers insight into compliance be helpful?
  3. Which costs will be the responsibility of the employee? This pertains to any fees associated with usage – from network plans, to the device itself, to software, accessories and maintenance costs.
  4. What data will be accessible? Will data encryption be necessary for certain information traveling through the personal devices of employees? Which employees will have read, write, update/delete privileges?
  5. What is the process when handling sensitive data stored on lost or stolen devices, or the personal devices of ex-employees? Does the company or organization have the right to wipe out the entire device or just corporate data and apps?

BYOD is here to stay as it affords smaller-sized companies the mobility of a corporate giant without a huge investment. But when it comes to ensuring that devices, applications and networks are safe from the variety of threats linked to greater mobility, small business owners may find it necessary to enlist the help of a managed service provider to adequately take on mobile management challenges and provide ongoing consultation.

CLICK HERE for a free technology assessment.

 

Keeping up with Technology – Speaker for your event?

With the rate of technology ever increasing and the importance it has on becoming a successful business, Michael is increasing his number of speaking engagements as a value add activity to surrounding communities.   He can easily adapt his talk to the audience or topic and speaks on all things technology and how to maximize it for your desired results.   Please let us know if you are interested in having Michael speak at your upcoming meeting.   Read Michael’s full bio below.   Thanks!

Keeping up with Technology Michael St Martin|Cognoscape|ITServices

Michael St. Martin

Learn what’s up with the latest technology trends and how “Strategic Technology Acceleration” can rocket your business forward.  Is your technology a competitive advantage?  Do you know how to leverage Cloud Computing? Mobile Devices? Is your network secure? Michael St. Martin will provide information and real world tips that you can use immediately to make your systems an asset instead of a liability.

Michael St. Martin is an entrepreneur and founder of Cognoscape, a Business Technology company that specializes in bringing Enterprise Class technology solutions to Small and Medium Business. While Cognoscape is the newest of Michael’s successful business ventures, his experiences include executive positions with Accenture, building sales organizations with NetIQ and Permeo and adding value to multiple IPOs’ and M&A’s.   His current passion resides in assisting business owners to utilize technology and gain a competitive advantage while streamlining their business.  

Michael has spoken to audiences both large and small, always imparting insight into the latest technology and how to apply it to the audience.   “My goal as a speaker is to give the audience something to take away immediately and apply to their business that day, while entertaining them along the way,” says Michael.   So… great and timely content, mixed with Michael’s engaging style motivates the audience into action!