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Making BYOD Work in the Legal Services Industry

Read and learn how IT management in the legal sector has responded to challenges brought on by the bring your own device (BYOD) trend.

Making BYOD Work in the Legal Services Industry

by Jonathan Dale | March 01, 2013

Bring your own device (BYOD) has been viewed as a disruptive trend for many organizations in the most regulated industries. However, with mobile device management (MDM) and mobile application management (MAM) solutions, enterprises in virtually any industry can ensure that all compliance requirements are met and data is secure.

The legal sector has increasingly turned toward BYOD to streamline operations, reduce equipment expenditures and improve overall efficiency. As organizations in this industry handle highly sensitive information that can be used during litigation proceedings, security and monitoring capabilities are critical.

BYOD: A Data Security Time Bomb?

A new survey revealed by SCL.org states that a majority of legal firm executives view BYOD in this way, especially when their organizations are not properly prepared to support personally owned smartphones and tablets. Regardless of whether a firm has MDM solutions in place or allows BYOD, a majority of professionals in the sector are accessing corporate data through their devices.

The source explained that the survey, conducted by Research Now in December 2012, revealed that 84 percent of law firm employees are using personal devices to access company data, while just under half are using personal laptops to access networks and information remotely.

The true problem lies in how legal organizations are approaching data security and management of devices. The survey shows that two-thirds of laptops used by legal professionals do not have effective anti-virus or data protection software, while 43 percent of organizations are spending less than $1,000 annually on security software and protocols.

However, with MDM solutions and the integration of BYOD policies into overarching, existing security frameworks, legal organizations can capitalize on the benefits of mobility.

Alleviating Compliance Concerns

Computer Weekly recently reported that BYOD has come with a variety of compliance concerns, especially as electronic litigation proceedings become more commonplace around the globe. The source suggested that all organizations in the legal sector not allow employees to access corporate information or networks until the controls are in place.

MaaS360 is a perfect enterprise mobility management suite for the legal sector, as the federal government and a variety of healthcare providers have already implemented the solution. With remote wipe capabilities, enhanced monitoring tools and cloud-powered applications that optimize cost-efficiency and security, law firms can strike the balance necessary for profitable BYOD strategies.

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Mobile Device Management Policy Best Practices

Managing smartphones and tablets is only half the MDM story. Securing the data and access points between corporate systems and your workers' iOS, Android, Windows, and BlackBerry devices requires just as much consideration and planning as protecting the devices themselves.

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