You talk all day on your phone. You peck out dozens or hundreds of messages. You access files remotely. You check your calendar hundreds of times per month. Clearly your mobile phone is VERY important to you.
If it’s important to you, it’s also important to hackers who know it contains valuable information to help them hack into your corporate network or find data to be used for financial gain (ie credit card numbers, passwords, personal information and etc).
Symantec noted that according to a recent study by Forrester, The State of SMB IT Security and Emerging Trends 2009 to 2010, more small and medium sized businesses (40 percent) noted their security concerns about smartphones than any other technology in Forrester’s study.
Five practical things you can do TODAY to enhance mobile security are:
- Focus on protecting the information as opposed to focusing on the devices – instead of solely focusing on the devices, SMBs need to take a step back and look at where their information is being stored and protect those areas accordingly.
- Encrypt the data on the devices – the information stored on a company’s mobile devices is an SMB’s most important asset. Encrypting this data is a must. If the device is lost and the SIM card is stolen, the thief will not be able to access the data if the proper encryption technology is loaded on the device.
- Make sure security software is up to date – SMBs must treat mobile devices just like they would their PC, and keep security software up to date. This will protect the device from new variants of malware and viruses that threaten an SMB’s critical information.
- Develop and enforce strong security policies for using mobile devices- in addition to encryption and security updates, it is important to enforce password management for managers and employees. Maintaining strong passwords will help protect the data stored in the phone if a device is lost or hacked.
- Use caution when enabling Bluetooth connections – a phone’s Bluetooth setting is on by default, so it will need to be turned off or paired with the device and configured with the headset. If not, the device will look for other Bluetooth-enabled phones to connect to, and could result in malware being loaded on to the device.