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Managing The Security And Legal Implications Associated With Bring Your Own Devices (BYOD) London Executive Forum Proved A Great Success

Hitec Laboratories, a leading provider of Enterprise Content Management (ECM) and Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) software solutions to enterprises around the world, hosted a lively Forum on the risk implications related to BYOD, chaired by Charles Pender, FCIS, the independent governance consultant and pension fund trustee, (formerly Director, Corporate Affairs at Amlin).

Held at Balls Bros, Minster Exchange, Charles was joined by David Canham, Head of Operational Risk at Aviva, Berry Holding-Parsons, E-commerce and Data Protection Lawyer; Roger Oldham, a leading London Market Consultant on business processes and Compliance; IT, Governance and Risk expert, Jeremy Crame, CEO, Hitec Laboratories.

The Forum was a truly interactive debate on the key issues and possible solutions to the challenges surrounding BYOD, with key topics including:

  • The London Markets view of the integration of BYOD into business and the possible legal implications of their use and how can these be addressed
  • Having identified the risk as IT or a business process, what is the answer?
  • How does Operational Management identify and manage the risk?

Charles Pender said: "I enjoyed chairing this excellent event for the London market. For businesses that grasp the opportunity, the increasing use of Bring Your Own Devices can undoubtedly be very positive. But the Forum also highlighted that anyone without clear policies and procedures to manage the governance, legal and regulatory challenges involved is asking for trouble."

The Forum offered a perspective that BYOD is not just an “IT Problem”, it’s also a cultural, social and board agenda issue which, far from going away, looks likely to increase over the coming years. With society moving on to more mobile and digital based technologies the social, technical and security factors surrounding BYOD need to be appropriately understood and managed by organisations.

David Canham, Head of Operational Risk at Aviva, comments: “It was a good opportunity to share some of the insights gained from my Institute of Risk Managers academic research and professional activities with a wide audience, helping bring a practitioners view to a subject that is widely reported in many different agendas. The mix of presenters gave a multi-dimensional view to the issues surrounding BYOD and a unique insight from the technical, legal and operational risk viewpoints. The session gave an enlightening perspective and provoked the audience to consider their own position and adoption of BYOD.”

BYOD policies need to be very carefully thought through if businesses are to avoid a potential minefield. Key considerations should comprise:

  • Who owns any data that may reside on the employee’s device and how can you ensure it will be repatriated when an employee leaves?
  • What right of access do you have to their device? Where is this written down?

Roger Oldham said: ‘I was delighted to talk with the audience about BYOD as it is one of the most important topics in the workplace at the moment. It's estimated that at least 60% of employees are using their own mobile devices to receive and transmit company related data or access core systems, so understanding the associated risks and the establishing an integrated corporate policy for using such equipment should be firmly on an IT and Compliance departments radar. The event provoked some great questions and demonstrated that shared thinking on the subject is of real value.’

Clear policies need to be written with a record of when they were communicated to employees. Employees should then affirm their acceptance of the policy before the devices are connected to the network. This provides evidence should any potential litigation arise.

Jeremy Crame comments: ‘we are being continually approached by Financial firms asking for advice and support with their challenges relating to BYOD. Driven by tightening regulations and standards, these firms are looking to implement our automated solution, PolicyHub, to ensure their Governance, Risk and Compliance needs are met and to demonstrate Best Practice. BYOD can cause a lot of conflict and our customers are using PolicyHub, to provide peace of mind in an increasingly demanding regulatory environment.’