Are You Smart About Smart Device Usage in Your Business?

7 Points to Include in Your Mobile Device Policies

Posted by Timothy Dimoff in on March 10th, 2016

Smart devices have become an important tool in today’s business. Simply defined, a smart device is any electronic device generally connected to other devices or networks via different wireless protocols. As usage of these devices, including wearables like smart watches, is now widespread, it is essential for organizations to establish policies.  Analysts predict that by 2018, 25 per cent of corporate data will completely bypass perimeter security and flow directly from mobile devices to the cloud.

Make sure your employees understand if and what data is being collected, processed and stored.
One dilemma is what restrictions do you put on employees regarding using smartphones and mobile devices after hours for work, or even personal usage? Other major concerns include risk to and/or loss of data, security issues, controls, monitoring and privacy issues.

Make sure your employees understand if and what data is being collected, processed and stored. Setting some restrictions and guidelines for smart devices usage during work hours and after work hours in your employee manual is strongly advised, especially if you supply the devices. Make sure your legal and your HR departments work together to develop policies and that your employees are advised of these policies and any changes to them.

7 Points to Include in Your Policy

Here are some suggestions that you may want to incorporate into your policies:

  • Outline your policies on mobile devices that are to be used primarily for business purposes, especially if they are company property, and if personal use is allowed or discouraged.
  • Include information and policy on company owned devices, as well as employee owned devices.
  • Be specific regarding actions that are considered misuse of mobile devices (e.g. downloading apps, internet browsing, texting, etc.).
  • Outline the consequences of inappropriate activity or misuse of mobile devices (e.g. disciplinary action up to and including termination).
  • Be very specific regarding rules for using personal mobile devices to access company resources, such as email and servers.
  • Include guidelines for data privacy and security, such as setting up passwords and the internal procedure to use if a phone is lost or stolen.
  • Finally set restrictions and publish guidelines for smart devices usage during work hours in your employee handbook.

Smartphones and mobile devices will continue to change how your organization does business and present future challenges in the workplace, so be sure to update your policies and practices regularly.


Timothy Dimoff
Timothy Dimoff

President, SACS Consulting & Investigative Services

Timothy A. Dimoff, CPP, president of SACS Consulting & Investigative Services, Inc., is a speaker, trainer and author and a leading authority in high-risk workplace and human resource security and crime issues.
He is a Certified Protection Professional; a certified legal expert in corporate security procedures and training; a member of the Ohio and International Narcotic Associations; the Ohio and National Societies for Human Resource Managers; and the American Society for Industrial Security. He holds a B.S. in Sociology, with an emphasis in criminology, from Dennison University.

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