BYOD Policies: Are You Taking a Stand?

Trying to keep up with technology is a struggle for every employer. Many companies are now adopting bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies for employees who work on their personal laptops, tablets and smartphones, instead of on company-owned equipment. This can lower cost and improve morale, but it also raises numerous security and legal concerns. Your best defense is a well-crafted BYOD policy.

How Employers Should Address BYOD

Things to consider:
• Security – is company data properly protected by employee’s own passwords? What if employees use unsecured Wi-Fi hotspots?
• What if nonexempt employees use their devices to check emails or other wise engage in work outside of their scheduled work hours? This could open you up to exposure to the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act for overtime pay.
• Expense reimbursements is another issue. Does your company have to pay for the costs incurred in connection with the use of a personal device used for work?
• Business records stored on an employee’s personal device must be saved long enough to satisfy electronic discover requests during litigation.
• Working with your legal team and IT, be sure to write a comprehensive policy that will take into account the concerns of both the company and its employees.
• Use mobile device management technology (MDM) to create a partition in each device to separate work data and personal data.
• Determine which devices will be supported and which type of data employees will be able to access.
• If nonexempt employees will be eligible for BYOD, develop specific guidelines for when they may work off the clock, if at all.
• State the employer’s right to access, monitor and delete information from employee-owned devices. Explain how the company will protect an employee’s personal information.
• Detail when employer data will be “wiped” from personal devices.
• Create data protection practices that require strong passwords and automatic locking of devices, as well as protocols for lost or stolen devices.

A BYOD system can work well for most employers, as long as you’ve devised a thoughtful approach to security, privacy and compliance concerns.

SACS Can Help Your Organization Address BYOD

SACS Consulting & Investigative Services, Inc. can make sure your organization is covered when employees use their own electronic devices for work with a viable BYOD policy. Call 330-255-1101 to speak with one of our HR Policies and Procedures professionals today.