Security is not some new business requirement, but it is constantly changing as the latest technologies and trends enter the fold. Enterprise mobility is one of the most disruptive developments sweeping the IT space. Today, employees are using their personal smartphones and tablets to access corporate documents. Although this is ideal for productivity - personnel can accomplish tasks anywhere and at any time - misplaced gadgets can expose company information and customer data.
A recent Gartner report indicated that a quarter of personnel experienced a security issue with their personally owned devices in 2013. However, only 27 percent admitted to disclosing such events to their employer.
Meike Escherich, principal research analyst at Gartner, asserted that bring your own device is "exploding" in the corporate sector, bringing with it plenty of issues related to compliance and regulatory guidelines.
"One of the biggest challenges for IT leaders is making sure that their users fully understand the implications of faulty mobile security practices and to get users and management to adhere to essential steps which secure their mobile devices. For many organizations, overcoming BYOD security challenges is a full-time task, with a host of operational issues," Escherich said.
Sometimes asking for help isn't a sign of defeat
Some companies are proud that they don't need help from outside sources to handle important internal tasks. However, security is not an option - it is a corporate necessity that must be addressed as such. Going at it alone may not be the best approach for a business that may lack the expertise of a leading professional.
An IT managed services provider, for example, can help clients improve their security to stop cybercriminals from accessing sensitive data. All it takes is one breach to set a business back years, both financially and from a consumer trust standpoint.
A recent IBM and Ponemon Institute study indicated that the cost of the average breach in 2013 totaled $3.5 million, up 15 percent from the previous year. Each stolen or lost record averaged $145, increasing more than 9 percent from 2012.
Larry Ponemon, chairman and founder of the institute, noted the main focus of the study was to not only highlight the types of attacks impacting businesses, but also emphasize the potential losses from these events. Companies must improve their prevention, detection and solution systems to combat future incidents.
Kris Lovejoy, general manager of IBM Security Services Division, said cloud computing and mobility have resulted in more persistent data, making both malicious insider threats and hackers major concerns.
"A data breach can result in enormous damage to a business that goes way beyond the financials. At stake is customer loyalty and brand reputation," Lovejoy asserted.
The frequency of security breaches will only intensify if organizations lack the safeguards to keep data from falling into the wrong hands. If your firm has experienced an attack already then you understand the severity of the situation. Those that have been fortunate up to this point should not bank on this luck for long. Can your company afford to lose $3.5 million from a single event? If not, it's time to seek help from a managed IT services provider today.