Don't let mobile devices cost your business $3MM!

By Eric Huskey

In 2013 lost or stolen cell phones nearly doubled from 2012 to 3.1 million.   Mobile security needs to be a top priority for businesses; however, a Spiceworks survey shows that while 98 percent of IT professionals are concerned with mobile security less than 49 percent currently have a mobile device management (MDM) capability.

Not the least of a business’ concern is their fiduciary responsibility to protect client and employee personal information.   Without a doubt, no business wants to payout a $3M settlement like AvMed had to do when two unsecured and unencrypted laptops were stolen from their office in December of 2009.  While losing personal information can have serious implications it’s only the start of your security concerns.

Without the right MDM capabilities in place your company is inviting attackers to gain access to corporate applications, emails, proprietary information, customer lists, agreements, etc.  Here’s an example. A $40M dollar south Florida firm allows employees to access email on their personal devices.  One of their employees loses their device and never set up a passcode requirement.  The person who finds the device decides to pull a ‘harmless’ prank and forwards a pornographic photograph to every company contact/customer on the phone.  What’s the impact on the firm’s reputation? They were lucky though.  It could have been far worse.

Another company provides company owned phones but allows employees to download applications to those devices.  An employee downloads one of the fake applications discussed by Martyn Williams in this article found on   It’s one of many mobile device vulnerabilities that allows attackers to install fake applications that replace legitimate ones.   These applications are capable of downloading entire email boxes and SMS messages.

New threats will continue to rise and users will continue to find ways to access corporate applications on their mobile devices.  Insuring your organization against these risks is as simple as finding a partner who can implement and manage a mobile device strategy.  Putting in place an effective and affordable MDM solution is not just prudent.  It is imperative.

PS – If your iPhone is still on iOS7 and you are concerned your phone may have a ‘fake app’ you can go to “Settings > General > Profiles” and review suspicious entries.  iOS8 users cannot take advantage of this feature.  We recommend that you only download applications from the Apple App Store.

MCG offers managed IT services for those who want to concentrate on what’s most important to your business – the business itself, and the clients who keep your company alive. We provide a number of technology solutions that make doing business easier than ever before. If you want to keep your virtual servers and your entire company safe, give us a call at P305.592.5433 ext.2601.