Where Does BYOD Video Conferencing Fit into the Enterprise Puzzle?

BYOD video conferencing requires clear policies.

The bring your own device (BYOD) trend has introduced increased flexibility and functionality to the enterprise environment, and though the movement once applied primarily to smartphones, it now encompasses laptops and tablets as well. The introduction of these latest devices into the BYOD fold means that it’s more important than ever that companies understand and are able to manage the way BYOD is implemented in the organization. 

One application of BYOD that doesn’t always get enough scrutiny is video conferencing. As beneficial is it may be to support BYOD video conferencing, it is crucial to develop a concise security strategy and a policy model for handling video conferencing over personal employee devices.

Managing Video Conferencing Security in a BYOD World

In order to protect company information, it’s crucial to start by establishing and following security best practices before allowing BYOD video conferencing. The lack of a sound BYOD security policy can lead to some serious breach possibilities. One example is the Zoom vulnerability uncovered in July 2019. While Zoom quickly released a patch to address the issue, organizations that have implemented BYOD may not be aware of which employees are using Zoom and what devices they are using it on.

A business must be able to confirm that all BYOD devices are up to company functionality and security standards. In this particular case, not knowing who among a group of BYOD users attends meetings via Zoom could have resulted in the leak of sensitive information given out in the course of a Zoom session. Addressing the BYOD technical challenges an organization faces reduces the support costs of BYOD video conferencing while keeping intellectual data secure.  

Solving the Technical Challenges of Integrating BYOD Video Conferencing

Part of solving your BYOD video conferencing security issues is implementing software that can help minimize risk. Most businesses that allow BYOD already have a device management or mobile application management (MAM) solution on hand to enforce security and technical policies on devices that touch any part of its data or network infrastructure. If your company is one of those that do not, you should consider implementing a version of this kind of software before allowing BYOD.

A MAM solution makes it easy to deploy security patches and to create reports on the overall compliance of each device that touches company data.

Centralizing the management of your devices offers a number of underappreciated benefits. It allows you to establish a corporatewide BYOD standard and enforce this standard without much effort beyond the click of a few buttons, This gives you the ability to establish a golden rule set of document sharing and usage policies, data sharing restrictions, and a list of approved video conferencing applications.

Implementing or expanding the functionalities of a current MAM or another centralized management application, such as Microsoft’s System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM), makes it easy to deploy security patches and to create reports on the overall compliance of each device that touches company data. This equips you with a concise audit trail and reduces support costs for your chosen video conferencing applications.

Adopting BYOD With Interoperability in Mind

Taking control of BYOD video conferencing means properly defining how BYOD devices will interact with all areas of your network architecture. All major video conferencing vendors have mobile apps for smartphones and tablets, as well as client-based installations or browser-based WebRTC for laptops, making deployments, patching, and upgrades easy with the right management tools in place.

You’ll want to align BYOD usability goals with business data encryption and overall security goals.

When implementing BYOD video conferencing, it’s important that your approved video conferencing applications securely handle employees’ data and minimize potential misuse or theft and that they also meet the needs of users looking for compatibility with their device and for specific features. This requires a multi-team approach to align BYOD usability goals with business data encryption and overall security goals. 

BYOD Video Conferencing Is a Tool Best Kept Secure

Video conferencing is a valuable–and increasingly popular and necessary–tool for any business of any size. When BYOD is in play, well-defined and established security and technical management policies must be in place to reduce risks to network and information security. MAM and MDM (mobile device management) tools, when combined with a thick client management tool like SCCM, can ensure that these policies, once established, are fully enforced and the activities of every device are tracked. This protects your business data from interacting with unauthorized applications or parties and limits data movement in video conferencing scenarios. 

BYOD is here to stay, as is video conferencing and collaboration in the enterprise. Devising an appropriate BYOD support strategy and allowing only white-listed video conferencing applications will deepen your data protections and limit the liability of allowing video calling interactions on personal devices. 

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