The Security Tradeoffs of BYOD and Potential BYOD Security Solutions
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The Security Tradeoffs of BYOD and Potential BYOD Security Solutions

Headshot of a woman By Jennifer Warren November 21, 2023

Categories: Bring Your Own Mobile Workforce

There’s no denying it: more employees than ever are using their own devices on the job. And while the rise of bring your own device (BYOD) programs have helped workers and their employers be more efficient, the introduction of unmanaged devices brings significant security tradeoffs. Let’s examine the growing popularity of BYOD and how organizations can ensure they’re mitigating risk with BYOD security solutions.

The Growing Popularity of BYOD

BYOD is here to stay. According to a recent survey from Zippia, BYOD usage has increased 58 percent since 2021. There is a good reason for this: there are real, tangible benefits for both employees and employers.

For employees, it’s a chance to work with devices they’re used to and are already a part of their lives. That means increased efficiency, productivity and convenience. The same efficiency and productivity gains will benefit employers, who get the additional benefits of low overhead and minimal management. However, with these benefits come security concerns.

The Risks of Inadequate BYOD Security

While employers can save time and resources on device management with most BYOD policies, the tradeoff comes in the form of increased risk. Decreased management burden comes with decreased visibility into the devices that are connecting to your network and accessing your company’s sensitive data. This risk can take on many forms, including malware, data theft and legal issues.


Unmanaged personal devices may not have proper security. If you don’t believe us, how sure are you right now that you’ve downloaded the latest software on your cellphone? Devices lacking proper security or the latest patches are vulnerable to malware attacks.

Data Theft

Each device that connects to your network is a potential entry point for attackers to access sensitive personal, company or customer data. It only takes one infected device to let the bad guys into the network.

Legal Issues

When deploying a BYOD program, employers may assume responsibility and liability for the way data on those devices is handled. An insecure device is a ticking time bomb that can lead to lawsuits.

BYOD Security Solutions: Mobile Device Management

Successful device programs start with a properly configured and enforced mobile policy. When a company prioritizes security, that usually includes a mobile device management (MDM) program. This allows companies to realize the benefits of BYOD without inheriting too much risk across employee devices. MDM solutions enable employers to set specific profiles with customizable privileges across device applications and captures important information across all corporate and BYOD devices.

What is an MDM?

Mobile device management (MDM) solutions are common security tools put in place to secure, monitor, manage and enforce policies on employees’ mobile devices. This security measure is especially important when implementing BYOD programs involving the business use of personal devices.

With an MDM, employers can set specific profiles that allow customized privileges and set specific access perimeters across device applications. MDMs can also act as a point of reference for critical business information across all devices, corporate provided or BYOD. The best BYOD security solutions should feature an MDM solution that includes:

  • Two-factor authentication (2FA): This is a critical additional layer of security for when employees inevitably lose or misplace their device, preventing sensitive data from falling into the wrong hands.
  • Automated role-based licensing: This gives employers the ability to terminate employee access, ensuring that the right employees – current and former – have access to the right level of information.

Are BYOD Solutions MDMs too?

Most BYOD solutions are not actual MDMs. However, finding a BYOD solution that integrates directly with your MDM is essential. The right integration can alleviate the licensing and management headaches often associated with onboarding and properly enforcement. Here are some of the ways a successful BYOD solution can simplify the concerns associated with BYOD security:

Device Security Policies

Mobile device policies are critical components of a successful BYOD program. Along with the profiles set up within your MDM, policies should be set into place outlining acceptable usage and BYOD security guidelines. Just like with any other policy, lack of proper and consistent enforcement makes your policy ineffective.

A complete BYOD solution can help ensure policy acknowledgment and ongoing compliance management while giving you unified insight.

Mobile Device Management and Support

Day-to-day management of MDM solutions can be a burden. Not to mention the additional bandwidth required to adopt or migrate to a new MDM system. With an expert BYOD solution provider, you can help alleviate much of that internal burden by allowing your BYOD solution to take over as your MDM project manager, whether on an as needed basis for large migrations, or even full day-to-day management, depending on your need.

When opting for complete day-to-day management, MDM solutions automate licensing enrollment and take care of follow-up. The right MDM also handles policing based on terminated employee workflows, role-based licensing updates and BYOD security policy changes across all devices.

Streamlined Programs and BYOD Security

While MDMs provide valuable insight, there are often key data components missing that are essential to proper management of your device programs. Motus BYO marries your MDM and BYOD policy data into a single, unified platform. This gives you complete oversight into user’s device program enrollment, policy acceptance history and BYOD security information within one system.

With our expertise and guidance, MDM adoptions, migrations, and day-to-day management become virtually effortless, alleviating the administrative burden of ongoing licensing and support issues.

At Motus, our BYO solution goes beyond security measures, helping customers drive compliance and mitigate risk, alleviating overstretched IT departments of these burdensome responsibilities. Interested in learning more? Check out more BYO-related content.

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