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Mobile Device Management: What is it, and does your company need it?

In the wake of the CoVid-19 pandemic and more companies opting to operate remotely, the use of mobile devices has significantly increased for businesses. Mobile phones and tablets provide many benefits as you work on the go, providing access to company resources and applications using a convenient and portable device. These may be company provided, or some companies have even implemented the idea of BYOD (Bring Your Own Device), which allows employees to carry their own devices, and may be connecting to corporate networks and resources.

Merging personal and business information on a single device presents a new risk to the business. IT managers must strictly manage access to corporate resources, which also ultimately means some level of control of the portable devices that are granted access. This issue is often solved by Mobile Device Management (MDM).

This article delves into Mobile device management, it’s benefit to businesses, best practices for MDM solutions, and more.

What is Mobile Device Management (MDM)?

Mobile Device Management is a proven methodology and toolset to provide workforce mobile productivity applications, as well as access to company data, while ensuring that data stays secure. In a nutshell, MDM lets the IT teams of organizations automate, control, and secure administrative policies on devices like laptops, mobiles, or other portable devices connected to the company’s network.

MDM deploys corporate guidelines, certificates, on-device configurations, backend software, and hardware to manage end-user devices. The primary objective of Mobile Device Management is to ensure better device control, and security, allowing greater user flexibility like the use of BYOD.

IT teams have to use various security settings and compliance across user groups, divisions, and locations of the organization. That said, to mitigate risks, reduce costs, and increase efficiency while ensuring data security, organizations must focus on implementing a robust Mobile Device Management solution.

Why is MDM important for small and medium businesses?

If portable devices will be allowed access to company resources, MDM is important regardless of a company’s size, industry vertical, or location. Let’s understand why.

Better control and Enhanced Business Security

With an effective MDM system, your data, emails, and other sensitive information remain secure. MDM offers greater control over devices. In case any mobile is lost or stolen, your administrator can lock or disconnect the device, thereby averting any critical loss of data. Thus, MDM plays an integral role in assuring business security.

Improved Flexibility

Mobile devices offer you the privilege of working from anywhere at any time. A centralized MDM ensures better distribution of business documents, learning materials, and training resources to the employees, ensuring that only authorized members access the materials.

Efficient Management

While mobiles offer multiple benefits, they could also become a source of distraction to employees. Organizations using MDM can block the sites or apps that they do not want the staff to access, or that may put the device and/or data at higher risk. For example, most transport companies restrict access to other apps except Waze or Google Maps. This ensures that drivers focus on their routes and stay safe.

Best Practices for successful Mobile Device Management

Regardless of whether an MDM is cloud-based or on-premises, it should provide transparency and let organizations maintain visibility to the users, endpoints, and where data moves in the process of being access. In essence, good mobile device management software, such as Microsoft Intune, saves time, enhances efficiency, increases production and security, and simplifies the overall mobile management system.

Some best practices for a successful MDM implementation include:

  • Automated Reports: When you choose an MDM, make sure the inventory and reporting tools include all enrolled devices and related information in the form of easy-to-follow reports.

  • Automatic OS and Software updates: Enforce updates to the underlying Operating System, and any applications that may impact the security of the device and data.

  • Limited access to company resources: Provide access only to the resources that are authorized and needed for any particular individual to do their job.

  • User Security Training: End users are often the weakest link when it comes to security. While a properly configured MDM solution assists in mitigating most risks related to data security, investing in some end user security training will be a wise decision.

Final thoughts

Laptops, smartphones, tablets, and a mobile workforce are here to stay – at least for the foreseeable future. To keep your company data secure, let Cybertek help you choose an MDM solution that fits your business needs and budget.

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