ICO Survey Finds Worrying Lack of Guidance for BYOD

A recent survey commissioned by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has found there to be something of a ‘laissez faire’ attitude when allowing staff to use their own personal devices at work.

BYOD (Bring Your own Device) is a growing trend as it allows organisations a more flexible workforce and employee’s a better work-life balance. The ICO survey, conducted by YouGov, found that 47% of all UK adults now use their personal smartphone, laptop or tablet computer for work purposes.

However, only 3 in 10 are provided with guidance on how to use these devices in a work capacity. This raises huge questions about how personal and sensitive information is accessed, stored and transmitted on these devices.

The survey found that the most common work activity carried out on personal devices was email (55%), editing work documents (37%) and storing work documents (36%).

The ICO’s Simon Rice commented:

“The rise of smartphones and tablet devices means that many of the common daily tasks we would have previously carried out on the office computer can now be worked on remotely. While these changes offer significant benefits to organisations, employers must have adequate controls in place to make sure this information is kept secure.”

“The cost of introducing these controls can range from being relatively modest to quite significant, depending on the type of processing being considered, and might even be greater than the initial savings expected. Certainly the sum will pale into insignificance when you consider the reputational damage caused by a serious data breach. This is why organisations must act now.”

IT Governance has just launched the BYOD Policy Template Toolkit. This in-expensive tool (currently just £20) will help you create an effective approach to BYOD and is fully aligned with the official guidance from the ICO.

This toolkit will help you create a BYOD policy: where staff will easily be able to understand what is and what isn’t allowed; how to maximise the benefits of BYOD; and how to safeguard your information assets with effective BYOD policies.

Learn more about the BYOD Policy Toolkit >>>