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Many businesses have had costly BYOD mobile security incidents

LeadershipMobilitySecurity & Privacy

A new report from networking security vendor Check Point Software Technologies has found that 79 per cent of businesses have had a mobile security incident in the past year, and they often weren’t cheap. For 42 per cent of businesses with an incident the cost was over six figures, and for 16 per cent it was over $500,000.

Mobile device security is becoming more and more of a concern, particularly as the bring your own device (BYOD) trend sees more employees using personal mobile devices as work tools, and working with sensitive corporate information. Checkpoint’s survey of nearly 800 IT professionals sought to quantify the growth of BYOD, the frequency and cost of mobile security incidents, and the related challenges facing businesses.

The report found a surge in personal mobile devices connecting to the corporate network. Among companies that allow it, 96 per cent said the number of devices is growing, and for 45 per cent the number is more than five times higher than it was just two years ago.

More than half of large businesses reported mobile security incidents costing more than $500,000 in the past year, and 45 per cent of SMBs reported incident that exceeded $100,000. Android was viewed as the mobile platform with the greatest security risk by 49 per cent of respondents, up from 30 per cent last year.

Despite the costly incidents, 63 per cent of businesses said they don’t manage corporate information on personal devices, and 93 per cent said they face challenges adopting BYOD policies. Some 53 per cent said there is sensitive sensitive customer information on mobile devices, up from 47 per cent the year before.

“Without question, the explosion of BYOD, mobile apps, and cloud services, has created a herculean task to protect corporate information for businesses both large and small,” said Paul Comessotti, Canadian regional director at Check Point Software Technologies, in a statement. “An effective mobile security strategy will focus on protecting corporate information on the multitude of devices and implementing proper secure access controls to information and applications on the go. Equally important is educating employees about best practices as majority of businesses are more concerned with careless employees than cybercriminals.”