Seamless data protection even with mobile working

Symbolbild HomeofficeFor years now, our private life and our work have been increasingly moving into the digital sector: 90% of Austrian households were equipped with Internet access in 2019.[1] With 99. 6 per cent, domestic companies are online almost everywhere.

Around 80 per cent of companies also access the Internet with portable devices.[2]

Mobile working is a concern for many employers and workers – be it business trips or field workers, the desire for more flexibility or simply the additional use of smartphones and tablets.

EU-GDPR: Data protection on your own?

The digitisation of our communication channels does not only bring convenience and benefits. The risks of data collection have already become public awareness after numerous, sometimes successful, attacks. More and more users attach importance to knowing that their data is securely stored and well protected. The law proves them correct: The EU GDPR, which came into force in 2018, requires companies to handle sensitive data (of EU citizens) – for example:

  • demonstrable protective measures and documentation,
  • transparency and confidentiality,
  • IT security and data protection impact assessment,
  • State of the art and accountability.

While workstations and server landscapes usually already have tried-and-tested security measures, the use of mobile devices presents IT with new, sometimes complex challenges – starting with mobile devices being more difficult to monitor and sometimes non-company devices accessing company data.    

Control over data, apps and permissions

The choice of suitable measures is up to the company itself, as is the self-testing of the efficiency and completeness of the safety measures. However, compliance with all state-of-the-art regulations is hardly possible without MDM software. Sensitive information such as contact details or e-mails must also be protected from unauthorised access and loss on laptops, smartphones or tablets. The devices must be password-protected and have an antivirus protection. Data must be encrypted, private and professional information must be strictly separated. It is also essential to ensure that the security of sensitive data is not compromised via app permissions, for example, by messenger services or social media apps gaining access to contact details.

Companies must therefore retain control over all end devices in the company network and demonstrably ensure that all security requirements are met here, that no unauthorised apps are installed and that, in case of doubt, all company data can be deleted via remote access.

Mobility is the future

A suitable MDM system not only enables compliance with the GDPR requirements. At the same time, the considerable administrative burden of IT is reduced to a minimum. The MDM provides a detailed overview of all mobile devices with access to enterprise resources at a glance. Devices such as applications can be centrally managed and inventoried. Software distribution, including the rollout of updates and licenses, is also centrally initiated and done at the push of a button. In addition, the system provides powerful malware protection and enables automated actions during security breaches.

To protect sensitive data from unauthorised disclosure, third-party access or loss, private data and apps must be reliably separated from corporate data, for example, by containerisation. This technical measure also supports the implementation of data protection impact assessment and accountability obligations such as transparency, temporary storage and encryption. Companies and employers also benefit from the freedom to use private devices in the company environment or work equipment for private purposes. This increases employee satisfaction and productivity as well as employer attractiveness.

Mobile solutions will continue to play a significant role in our private and professional lives. Therefore, investing in a future-proof solution is advisable: Professional concepts, simple handling and reliable methods are worthwhile.

Also worth reading:

IKT-Studie 2019: Kleine und mittlere Unternehmen hinken bei IT-Sicherheit hinterher
IKARUS Cost-effective mobility solution also for SMEs



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