Corporations are rapidly adapting to remote productivity needs driven by mobile technology advancements and COVID-19. Banking is one of the most recent industries to allow employees to access enterprise networks from personal devices.

However, unsecured personal device use creates vulnerabilities, so financial institutions must develop robust Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policies to maintain privacy and regulatory standards.

Official BYOD policies address security, administrative, and budgetary concerns. Creating a good BYOD program means financial institutions balance employee and client convenience with data protection and legal and regulatory compliance.

BYOD Policy Framework

Mobile device security should be a BYOD policy cornerstone. Enterprises requiring remote protection should establish a mobility solution that secures mobile devices. Options include Mobile Device Management (MDM) platforms securing user devices and Virtual Mobility Solutions (VMSs), segregating user devices’ data.

Both solutions offer organizational security. However, their methods differ. MDM hardens the user devices against intrusion, and a VMS keeps sensitive information off the device entirely. Solution design greatly determines BYOD protocols, so financial institutions should review attributes and associated costs carefully.

Security Considerations

Like other platforms, mobile devices receive security patches to maintain on-going network protection. MDM BYOD scenarios present a unique obstacle as personal device use spans all hours of the day. Bank administrators must coordinate patches with users, striking a balance between maintaining device security without disrupting business or personal usage.

VMS updates are far less complicated. IT members can implement patches and updates through the enterprise’s central server, eliminating the need for individual device patches and improving administrative efficiency.

Mobile devices using unsecured or unmanaged networks like public Wi-Fi at airports, retail stores, and coffee shops pose a significant risk. All network users can easily access the data flowing through these public sources. Traditional MDM does not mitigate this threat, so users must be aware and vigilantly follow BYOD policy requirements.

A VMS eliminates public network risks by keeping data on the server, not the device. An image of the data is transferred to the employee’s device using an encrypted tunnel. Users can access information regardless of the method, and data remains protected on the server.

Legal Considerations

In most MDM BYOD policies, banks institute employee permissions agreements to obtain device management abilities. These contracts strip users of privileges on their own devices and raise questions over whether the bank or the employee is responsible for device costs, security, and maintenance.

These concerns are often enough to discourage bank IT departments from BYOD, and yet there are other legal issues to consider. Employees have a right to privacy, including protecting personal data on their devices. With MDM, banks have access to personal information, intentionally or unintentionally. As a result, users can reasonably make privacy violation claims. If a bank’s central network breach replicates to the user’s device and compromises its device, the bank would likely be liable.

With a VMS BYOD, employees access corporate information through a user-friendly app that maintains complete separation of personal and enterprise data. The app creates a virtual-viewing environment without any resident data on the mobile device, maintaining full end-user functionality to interact with any enterprise data needed to complete work functions.

BYOD Policy Protocols

A mobile security solution’s infrastructure determines most BYOD policy protocols. Traditional MDM solutions require user-focused protocols since MDM secures devices but can’t prevent user behaviors.

Typical MDM BYOD policies may limit what a user can do with a personal device. A policy may ban certain apps, block certain websites and browsers, and monitor users’ actions. Employees might accept such MDM restrictions on company-issued assets, but they are far less willing to do so on their own devices. Also, today’s employees resist carrying a second, company-issued device. Providing these devices is a significant corporate expense both in acquisition and maintenance. And, company-issued devices are a disincentive when hiring future employees.

Some MDM-based protocols frustrate users, particularly in conjunction with more restrictive security settings. Users may encounter strict password and multi-factor authentication requirements and may lose device administrative functions, including installing or running apps and programs. Employees often decide these added security requirements aren’t worth the convenience of using personal devices for work. They may circumvent company MDM solutions rendering them useless, a waste of resources, and a security risk. Lost or stolen devices require remote wipes meaning the loss of all data, personal and corporate. No employee wants to risk losing their data at the hands of corporate IT.

In contrast, VMS BYOD policies take a different approach to user behaviors. VMS protocols might limit sharing credentials and require that users alert IT if their device is lost or stolen. However, a compromised device won’t require a remote wipe because no data ever rests on the device. VMS policies also don’t require MDM’s restrictive behavior elements. A device’s corruption has little impact on a VMS platform, so the organization doesn’t need to focus on device security or user behavior to protect data.

BYOD Solutions

BYOD is the future, and enterprises enjoy many benefits from successful implementation. Employees have greater job satisfaction, company overheads are lower, and communication is more efficient. According to a Frost & Sullivan study, using personal devices for work increases daily productivity by almost an hour.

Secure, user-friendly BYOD is possible with the right mobility solution. With the regulatory concerns and employee-adoption complications surrounding MDM BYOD policies, an agile bank IT department should consider a VMS.

Hypori Virtual Mobility™ resolves banking BYOD challenges. Unlike expensive, heavy-handed MDMs and their restrictive user agreements, Hypori® is lightweight, cost-effective, and policy-friendly. IT administrators aren’t responsible for managing employee devices, and Hypori keeps data where it belongs. User information stays on the device, and enterprise data remains in the company network.

Hypori’s military-grade security complies with financial regulatory standards, and its central administrative layer streamlines BYOD integration and implementation. Its innovative design and scalability sustain and grow with banks’ remote work needs. Hypori is banking’s productivity solution.