Goode Intelligence, which specializes in market intelligence and research and analysis for the information security and mobile phone security industries, surveyed organizations, asking whether they allowed Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) smartphone use. Seventy-one percent said they did and 47 percent of those surveyed said company data was being stored on “personal” devices. Those personal devices included Apple’s iPhone, which was present in 77 percent of the surveyed businesses, ahead of BlackBerry at 70 percent and Android at 65 percent, but coming on strong.
According to a report in techworld.com, “The cost-saving culture of ‘bring your own device’ smartphones is tempting enterprises into taking risks they would not contemplate for conventional computing devices….”
The story goes on to say that “[m]any of these smartphones were not being managed as secure devices, with fewer than one in five adding anti-malware and only half employing data encryption.”
Could this lack of smartphone security be the cause of the sharp rise in mobile malware infection incident reports over the last few years? In 2011 there was a 24 percent increase, up from nine percent in 2010 and 7 percent in 2009.
Techworld.com observes, “It is…difficult to infer that BYOD itself is fuelling a rise in mobile malware although the relatively unprotected nature of many of the devices uncovered by Goode would tend to suggest some connection.”
Goode Intelligence’s Alan Goode, who conducted the survey on smartphones says, “Smartphones and tablet computers are having a transformational effect on the way that an organization does business and manages information…. There is a big question over whether information security professionals can keep up with the pace of change currently seen with smart mobile devices (SMD) and can manage the risks associated with them.”