One big part of cyber security that many people didn't start to think about until recently was mobile security and BYOD (Bring your own Device), but the trend has been undeniable in the corporate world. Lee Badman, a blogger for Network Computing, said that much of the coverage of the BYOD market has focused on how complex data protection can be for companies and end users, but he believes there are also network implications that companies need to take into account when bringing a more inclusive mobility policy into play. For this reason, he believes there are a few things companies need to consider for their network, starting with their IP addresses.
"We're lucky to have a full, publicly-routed Class B network, but we still have more total devices in need of connectivity than we can serve with public IP addresses," he said of his company. "So we find creative ways to handle the load. For example, we put all devices that we practically can into private space, and we use [network address translation] where it makes sense, like for short-term wireless guest access in our stadium."
Badman said they also like to use their subnets for efficiency and relevance against other changes, such as when wired use in residence halls fell off due to wireless availability.
Companies managing a similar influx of devices need to determine if and when they need to move to IPv6 from IPv4. This could end up playing an important role in deciding on the fate of a BYOD program, according to Badman, as companies may not be fully ready to transition to the new version. Companies also must consider the subnet sizing and how it may scale to support future plans.
Companies should look to how the network is designed, Badman wrote on the website. If a design is dated or sloppy, BYOD implementation plans could be thrown off-course from the start.
"The influx of BYOD clients has a ripple effect that runs through wireless controllers, [access control lists], switch configurations, [dynamic host configuration protocol] pools, and the training of support staff," he said fo networks dealing with all of these additional network tasks stemming from BYOD at his company. "As we've grown our network to meet user demand, our assumptions about what we know about WLAN design have really been tested. We've reviewed and altered designs and added and upgraded hardware. And we can always count on users to let us know if our BYOD efforts aren't making the grade."
Think about the strain before the adoption
TechTarget said it is hard to plan for each user only having one device, as there is a trend now of buying a smartphone, a tablet and perhaps other devices, so users could end up using a lot of wireless bandwidth with their devices.
"Building a modular corporate wireless network with the ability to add more connections is one of the simplest things enterprises can do to future-proof their networks," according to the news source. "Even companies that don’t support a BYOD program today should recognize that tablets and smartphones are already making their way onto the corporate network, and IT has to plan for more devices to come."
Companies and IT departments cannot distribute more bandwidth indiscriminately, however, as they need to consider the security ramifications as well, TechTarget said. As a result, mobile device management platforms become essential for businesses trying to give their employees some mobile freedom and keep the network as safe as possible. A solution like this can allow businesses to know just what is happening on their network and stop anything undesirable, thereby saving security and network data concerns.
Data Security News from SimplySecurity.com by Trend Micro.