I have attended a lot of events, panels, customer meetings and round table discussions recently about consumerization and the effects that it is going to have on the enterprise. To be frank, I keep hearing a lot of “How are we going to manage these devices?” or “How are we going to protect our data on these devices”, but, what I’m not hearing is “How are we going to protect our employee’s?”
I’m finding while consumers are driving these devices into organizations, organizations are simply reacting and aren’t quite embracing it like they say they are. For an organization to truly embrace consumerization, they need to provide a two way street of protection. A key success factor in adopting consumerization is having employee’s embrace the idea of having an organization take some control of their devices – they need to feel as if they are being protected both ways.
“How do I ensure my employer can’t access my photographs?” “How do I ensure my boss is not reading or data mining my personal email on my device?” “How is it possible that my employer has the power to completely wipe my personal device, with my personal applications and photographs?”. These are questions that are being raised when employee’s are being engaged in consumerization brainstorming workshops.
Engaging your entire employee base has always been the most successful and recommended approach to security. Consumerization brainstorming workshops are an ideal way to break the ice with your employees and involve them in the planning process, while at the same time, benefiting from educating staff on the importance of security. This will not only make employee’s feel like they are playing a key part, it will also help with the adoption of security policies and technologies that help manage, protect and secure these devices.
So reach out to the users in your organization. You would be surprised at the warm reception you’ll receive. The loyalty you build when they feel they are part of the process is invaluable. Learning how your organization truly uses these devices will be enlightening. The human factor is still the biggest vulnerability in any security program and this is a good way to hit it right on the head!