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Camden Council BYOD use soars 240 percent in two years

Presents problems with legacy operating systems
Wed Aug 06 2014, 14:36
Smartphones

THE LONDON BOROUGH of Camden has seen a 240 percent rise in Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) use over the past two years.

A Freedom of Information Act (FOI) request submitted by government think tank Parliament Street discovered that the total number of personal devices jumped from 74 in June 2012, to 252 in June 2014.

Apple devices dominate the tally, with 192 personal devices from the fruit themed firm in use on Camden servers. Samsung was a not very close second with 44 devices, and HTC came in third with five.

"Introducing BYOD policies is a highly effective strategy for Councils to simultaneously save money whilst improving mobility of the workforce," said Parliament Street think tank CEO Patrick Sullivan.

However, few interesting facts emerge from this data. First, despite its second place standing, a win for Samsung is not a win for Android, with a small minority of users still using legacy devices running the old style Windows Mobile devices.

This is repeated with a single Motorola device and two aging Psion organisers, both running Windows Mobile. Notably, there are no Nokia devices registered, and indeed no devices running Windows Phone or Blackberry 10.

The survey shows not only the rise in BYOD over the past three years, but also the headache now facing IT managers as they ensure that both compatibility and security is maintained across a growing number of operating systems.

Veracode senior security specialist Gearoid O'Connor commented on the findings, saying, "The rise in BYOD brings with it a rise in BYOA - bring your own app. While this presents great opportunities for organisations to drive innovation and productivity, it often introduces increased risk. Hackers are increasingly looking to exploit security vulnerabilities and risky behaviour in mobile apps.

"To counter this problem, it is vital that organisations routinely assess the security of apps they are developing and procuring, as well as understand the behaviour of apps downloaded onto personal devices which also increasingly interface with sensitive corporate data."

Camden Council officials were unavailable for comment on the findings. The evolution of the various operating systems will be crucial in the way this list could look in another year.

The recently announced Android L is understood to have bolstered enterprise credentials, but with the clear popularity of Apple products when employees are given the choice, the arrival of the iPhone 6 could muddy the waters still further - not to mention the sentimental value of those two Psion devices.

For more on enterprise mobility, visit the Intel IT Center. µ

 

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