Mobile Security How Safe Are You?Mobile communications are an increasingly integral part of everyday lives. People communicate for fun and for work using mobile devices that range from watches to tablets to smartphones to laptops. But as mobile access has grown, so have mobile threats. Such breaches are lucrative for hackers, and extremely frustrating for the companies trying to thwart their attacks.

In the game of online security, cybercriminals are working at least as quickly as—if not quicker than—security professionals. The number of devices currently being used outside the office to hold video conferences, and the rate of technological advancement, make security a factor that mobile users and businesses ignore at their peril. Reading about these threats may make some companies shy away from using mobile devices for remote collaboration, they still add a great deal of flexibility and connectivity to the world. They are the beginning of the next generation of communication, making their use vital for work. However, effective adoption of mobile devices means addressing security threats head-on.

At the commercial enterprise level, this means maintaining an up-to-date security policy and educating staff members on proper device use. Ongoing device security is just part of the adoption of new, mobile technology that everyone must consider before logging on. The top five most problematic mobile security issues are:

Insecure devices. The mobile device world is advancing rapidly with new connected devices reaching the market almost daily. The sheer number of mobile devices regularly used by individuals, and the fact that many do not use the level of security needed to prevent an attack, puts enterprise users at risk. There are more pathways than ever that criminals can use to start an attack, and any device connected to the internet will always present a level of vulnerability.

Social media. Attackers can use social media for a variety of purposes. They can steal personal information for use elsewhere or they can spread malware using one of the many popular sites as a launching pad. Unfortunately, many mobile users erroneously believe they are safe when using social media sites, but not everything you click on today has been shared legitimately by a friend or family member. Social media users should use caution before engaging with content on these sites, especially when linked remotely to a work cloud system, or videoconferencing application.

An increasing number of criminals. Cybercriminals range from bored high school kids who have learned a few tricks online to career criminals who dedicate their lives to understanding the latest technologies and infiltration techniques. Whether you’re in the app store or holding a video conference call with shareholders on the other side of the world, a criminal could be tapped into your activities, stealing information while mimicking the look and feel of the application you’re using. Things that look safe aren’t necessarily giving you a complete picture. Many criminals use tactics that keep their actions untraceable, making vulnerabilities difficult to identify.

Inadequate policies. The rate of mobile device dissemination and adoption globally is faster than the design and implementation of comprehensive security policies. Mobile threats change like chameleons, requiring constant security updates. Businesses need ongoing security policies with strict guidelines to reduce the risk of attack. If your workplace has a BYOD policy in place, there’s even more reason to ensure staff members at every level are educated as to what your security guidelines are. Although many threats target big corporations, small businesses are not immune to cybercriminal attacks.

Middleman attacks. What you do on your device while online is only half the battle. Hackers can also gain entry when you access public Wi-Fi. Sometimes, these attacks effectively bypass enterprise security measures like firewalls and VPN connections. If you log in from a public place using an insecure connection, you are adding vulnerability to mobile device use.

At the end of the day, some businesses are much safer than others when it comes to mobile devices. Is your company doing enough to address these cybersecurity threats and keep sensitive information safe while employees use devices at work and on the go?

At Advanced AV we empower live meetings and remote collaboration by deploying the technology that helps your organization connect, communicate and engage with its customers, employees and stakeholders. Connect with us to find out more about how Advanced AV can help you achieve your business and technology goals.

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