fix stupidThe Army and the healthcare industry have come out with reports this week that show that while they are ahead of the times in getting mobility out and in use, they might not be doing it as safely as they should. They say you can’t fix stupid, but is it true?

Take a minute to look at these facts:

  • At West Point, 31% of inspected mobile devices didn’t have a password set-up. I wonder how many of those passwords are 1234…
  • Tracking of non-Blackberry devices is lacking as over 14,000 smartphones were discovered by the Army’s CIO to be in use without the proper authorization.
  • Nearly 89% of US healthcare workers use their personal smartphones for work in the healthcare industry. 41% of these are not password protected and 53% of these access unsecured wifi networks with their phone.

These numbers are for “security conscious” industries and with people who understand just how bad a breach can be and that even minimal security steps can make a big difference – just imagine how bad it is out in the real world.

MDMs will help with these issues but still misses a vital part of security: location. Also, without truly understanding what and when smartphones are walking through
your office, it’s impossible to create a policy for devices. With continuous wireless monitoring of both cellular and wifi devices, policies can be created such as BYOD and geofencing that address current problems.

There isn’t a cure for stupid or careless so steps must be taken to ensure these errors do not wreck a business. It may seem ridiculous that HOT is put on coffee cups, but there are reasons why. Small steps like monitoring are definitely worth it when you think of how much damage can be done by someone unknowingly on their iPhone or Samsung Galaxy S3.

You can’t fix problems you don’t know exist. With proper monitoring and detection, we can fix stupid.