As more companies implement a remote work model, many are also embracing the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trend. This means that employees can use their own phones, tablets, and laptops to access company servers and networks – offering a more user-friendly and convenient means of accessing company information. But, while this is beneficial for employees, it can serve as a security risk and make things more difficult for MSPs. In order to continue allowing employees to use their personal devices, MSPs must find a way to manage a large number of mobile devices while still maintaining a high level of security. Fortunately, with mobile device management (MDM), this is possible.
Why Does MDM Matter?
In one given office, it is safe to assume that each employee could have up to three or more devices. While this does not seem to be an issue, it creates a significantly higher number of security risks for MSPs. Each mobile device serves as a new entrance to your company's network and thus a security risk. As an MSP responsible for keeping your network and infrastructure secure and functional, these many mobile devices can be challenging to manage.
On top of the mere number of devices, many personal mobile devices are not designed with the same level of cybersecurity as a company laptop or desktop. Your smartphone, for example, is not equipped with the same anti-malware software that your computer may be, which means it is more vulnerable to attacks. Once your smartphone is connected to the company network, you create a new vulnerability that could result in a cyberattack or data breach.
That being said, many organizations still wish to practice the bring-your-own-device trend. While this does come with some risks, it can be managed with an experienced MSP – particularly if they practice mobile device management (MDM). MDM is a software solution that allows employees to access corporate networks and data from their personal devices, from any location. Essentially, MDM enables the oversight, regulations, and security of users' mobile devices – whether phone, tablet, or laptop. This concept encompasses mobile application management, content management, and conditional exchange access.
The primary goal of MDM is to ensure the security of mobile devices within a surrounding network while keeping them as functional as possible. Overall, with MDM, MSPs can more easily monitor and manage personal mobile devices with an organization's network. With this solution, employees benefit from the convenience and familiarity of using their own mobile devices while mitigating the security risk of doing so.
Features of MDM-enabled MSP
MSPs alone offer countless benefits to companies, ranging from enhanced IT monitoring and management, strengthened security to troubleshooting. But, as organizations welcome a growing number of mobile devices into their network, it is essential to have the additional support that an MDM solution can offer. An MSP equipped with MDM tools is instrumental to the modern organization, providing companies with significant benefits. To ensure that your MSP can meet your needs through their MDM solution, look for these key features in a provider:
- Enhanced network security. Likely the most significant benefit of utilizing an MDM solution is the enhanced security it offers. As mentioned, the more devices connected to your network, means more opportunities for cyberattacks or breaches. With an MDM, MSPs can ensure a strengthened level of security across all mobile devices, ensuring that they do not create opportunities for security risks.
- Easy and automatic updates. MDM is also an excellent tool for deploying automatic updates across mobile devices, ensuring that it can be kept up-to-date no matter the state of an individual's personal device. This is crucial for employees needing to access modern corporate applications, and with MDM, this can be done quickly and easily.
- 24/7 monitoring. One of the most basic responsibilities of an MSP is to monitor and manage a company's IT infrastructure. With MDM, your MSP can also offer 24/7 monitoring to each mobile device connected to your corporate network, ensuring consistent functionality and security.
- Remote control. Whether working in the office or remotely, your employees will be taking their personal devices off-site, introducing your company to security risks. Fortunately, MDM solutions can be deployed and run remotely through the cloud, ensuring that no matter where mobile devices are, they can be connected, configurated, and even wiped by your MSP when necessary.
- Scaling capabilities. The number of mobile devices connected to your network may change as employees enter and exit your company network, so scaling capabilities are necessary. The right MDM solution will be able to easily scale operations up or down according to user needs, ensuring that you have the perfect solution at all times.
- Logging and reporting functions. The capabilities granted to an MSP through MDM also provide them with enhanced logging and reporting functions, ensuring that operations are functioning as expected and all users remain in compliance.
MSPs Guide to MDM
Whether you are an MSP or are utilizing the services of one, having the capacity to manage a significant volume of mobile devices is crucial. More and more companies are embracing the BYOD movement, and it is essential that devices can be kept secure and functional while on your organization’s network. One of the most significant benefits of utilizing MDM solutions is its enablement of the BYOD trend. With MDM, MSPs can easily monitor and maintain all devices on the company network – mitigating security risks while providing employees with access to the tools and resources they need. While traditional technologies reject foreign devices from a company network, MDM enables this while ensuring that only authorized devices are permitted.
Beyond the BYOD trend, MDM provides MSPs with enhanced ease of remote device management. Whether employees are working on-site or at home, MSPs can monitor and manage all portable devices from wherever they are. Not only is this critical for security purposes, but it also means that employees have access to the IT support they need no matter where they are. In addition to reinforcing healthy devices, this ensures that your employees can carry out the tasks they need, boosting performance.
Allowing employees to use their personal mobile devices can be highly beneficial, but it does introduce some security risks. Fortunately, with an MDM-enabled MSP, these security risks are mitigated, in addition to introducing countless additional benefits. Using an MDM solution, your organization will experience strengthened network security, enhanced remote monitoring and management, efficient device updates and maintenance, and much more. For MSP to stay competitive, they must stay up-to-date. As remote work is on the rise, MDM is critical for managing employee devices from any location.